Passwords, Safewords and Safety


passwordWell, here I am in password hell again. Shouldn’t really complain, as it is lovely to have a Shiny New Laptop, but it is a touch tiresome to have to reset pretty much every password for every platform because, yes, I am the sort of lazy sod who allows my system to log me in automatically and promptly forgets what password I used for Insta rather than Ebay or Twitter rather than Fet. I had a five-day dustup with tech support in the day job recently when one of the programmes kicked me out and demanded a log in that I didn’t possess, too…

There was a meme doing the rounds a while back which showed a sketch of people engaged in kink activity with a caption along the lines of ‘your safeword must contain a mix of letters and numbers, upper and lower case, with at least one special character’. (The punchline was that kink can have unexpected extra challenges when done with a computer nerd…) Most people who use safewords tend to stick to easily-remembered things such as the traffic-light system, and most clubs tend to advise attendees that ‘Red’ is the universal safeword. There’s a lot to be said for having well-known and recognizable safewords because if you need to use yours, you want to be pretty sure that the other participant in whatever you’re up to is going to understand and act on it.password Passwords, of course, are supposed to be unguessable and unique, and most of your devices will reprimand you if you use the same one for various different accounts.

Remembering your password for everything you need to access can be thoroughly tiresome, but there are handy apps which will do the work for you across all your gadgets. Yeah, of course there are. Is it just me who detects a faint aroma of grift here? An awful lot of life seems to involve being told you are in terrible danger, but the grifter just happens to have a solution for you. When it comes to passwords, it might be worth asking yourself whether anyone else would actually be interested in hacking your blog or your membership of the Tellytubby fan club or whatever, and do you really need to live in constant fear of hackers?

You don’t need a password to look at the bookshop, anyway.

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