We’ve all heard the admonitions about making passwords that are strong, with letters and numbers and different characters and capitalized letters but when these complex passwords are combined with the fact that many users have multiple passwords to keep track of, sheer forgetfulness can often come into play. A new survey out from Lunabee shows just how far this problem goes.
The Lunabee survey turned to over 100 end users regarding opinions in mobile banking, password security, the use of iCloud for storage and several other fronts. 58 percent of said respondents admitted to forgetting a password, and being forced to use the relevant system reset in order to start the whole process anew. 52 percent, meanwhile, noted that passwords were frequently written down in order to help keep track of the array, and just 10 percent said that forgetting passwords simply wasn’t an issue.
But while keeping track of all the passwords involved in a daily session can be an issue, the idea of merely using mobile commerce or banking sites is not. 82 percent of respondents turned to mobile devices for banking, while almost as many—76 percent—turned to the same devices for conducting commerce in general. Mobile payments fell slightly, but at 72 percent, were still a substantial portion of the surveyed field. The remaining 28 percent, meanwhile, had one major concern: security. Of the 28 percent who didn’t use mobile devices to conduct payments, 80 percent of same would if security overall were given a bit of a boost. Many of the respondents were quite comfortable with iCloud as a storage mechanism as well, with 70 percent more comfortable with data on Apple’s servers, and 80 percent not feeling more secure in using Dropbox (News – Alert)as opposed to iCloud.
Some, here, may pose concerns about the Lunabee survey’s methodology. Bringing in about 100 users is a fairly small sample size, and the Lunabee survey is clearly weighted male, with males representing 88 percent and females representing 22 percent, which may be an error as that adds up to 110 percent of the pool. The age range is likewise skewed, as five percent of respondents were between 15 – 25 years of age, 23 percent were between 26 and 40, 59 percent were between 41 and 60, and 14 percent were over 60. As for the interesting proportion of users looking to turn to iCloud for storage, considering that 90 percent of those surveyed were on an Apple device—48 percent iPhone (News -Alert) and 42 percent iPad—some explanation may be provided in these numbers.
Still, the Lunabee survey is making it quite clear that issues of forgetfulness when it comes to passwords is a big concern. The numbers are too large to be explained away easily by demographic, which suggests a universal quality to the concerns regardless of any point in the survey. Thus, some recommend the use of password management tools to allow for complex passwords to be easily used while also easily remembered since, so to speak, the machine does the remembering.
Password strength is an important part of everyday online life. But a password too strong for its user to easily work with is no more useful than no password at all. Password management tools can help here, however, and as more and more people take to mobile and other online sources of things that are done every day, good passwords will help make the experience safer and better overall.