On the heels of Google's big announcement yesterday that 5 million Gmail user names and passwords were leaked, Google has quickly added a new Security Tab under the Account Settings. The new tab will give users a place to go and quickly update their security settings. Google suggests it will help to "secure your account and get better protection for your account." In one spot, you can now edit your recovery information for your phone and email, check your recent activity, remove account permissions and disable access for less secure apps.
Google has added no new features - these choices have always been available, but Google had a way of 'hiding' things, and the user had to search around for certain settings. Now the items related to securing your account are located in one easy-to-access area, where they should have been all along.
Security breaches are on the rise and it is hard to make it through a month without news that some corporation's accounts have been hacked. Despite a programmer's best efforts to develop a secure environment to hold our private data, there are always some people that will try anything to circumnavigate those security attempts. When it comes to someone hacking a Target or a bank for credit card information - that is out of our hands. We expect the corporation to have security measures in place to protect our data. But, when it comes to managing our own users names and passwords, we can get very involved in preventing them from being unmasked.
In a world where you need a password to access just about anything, it can be a real pain using a long and cryptic user ID and password, especially if you try to do it for all of your accounts. Once you decide on user IDs and passwords that you want to use, keep them in a secure area - and while your own head may be the most secure place (unless they capture and torture you), there are many third-party solutions you can look into. I use my most convoluted password for my money accounts, I use a shorter, but still cryptic one for my eBay-type accounts, and then I have an easier one to remember for all lower level, quick access accounts. I also store all of my sign-on information in a secure app called mSecure, because my head is too messy a place!
Please hit us up on our Google+ Page and let us know if your change your sign-ins on a regular basis and do you use long and cryptic passwords to make it even harder for hackers to figure out...as always, we would love to hear from you.