Thursday, March 10, 2022

The more (or less) things change - 3.10 #sol22 Story Challenge

During my time on the job, being online has increasingly become a part of being in school. The district in which I teach installed a single sign-on (SSO) service a few years ago, enabling access to frequently used software -- now cloud-based -- from one portal. That means, at its best, juggling a smaller number of passwords; not quite 'one password to rule them all' for school doings, but it's close. Of course, that puts a little extra pressure on getting right the SSO password itself.

In its first iteration, the system bolstered security by forcing a password change every 90 days. This year's version added dual verification, requiring users enter a numeric code sent by phone at least once every 30 days in order to confirm legitimate credentialing. That extra layer of protection extends the password's three-month lifespan to a full year. "Big win," I figured, shedding 4+ password changes per year.

My password's birthday rolled around this week, and I dutifully change is as prompted. No problem, right? Except, in the days since, out of well-oiled habit, I've entered my old and now invalid password more times than I can count, which has me weighing the trade-offs of familiarity versus flexibility. I mean, it feels like I'd only recently gotten accustomed to writing down 2022 reliably. (And I hear the clocks are coming for me next, this weekend...)


5 comments:

  1. Lord of the rings is one of my favourite books. Typing in old passwords has got me into trouble too. 😊

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  2. Brian, you bring up a sore subject with me. Passwords are so cumbersome but so needed. Passwords have to be strong and when that occurs, I get mixed up and do the same thing you did. My wish is to have an easier system but how does that happen?

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  3. "your password's birthday" - too funny! Many days I find myself in password hell; it has just gotten out of control. Great last sentence, Brian.

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  4. I am a creature of habit, so forced password changes, although necessary, can really disrupt my muscle memory. Don’t get me started about the time change…

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  5. I just recently wrote a post about this. I can so relate to the challenges of having to change one's password. My district, too, has us just using one password for everything--I love the phrasing "not quite 'one password to rule them all' "--I'll be thinking of that the next time I sign on!

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