Report: Changing Your Passwords Is a Waste of Time

Tuesday Apr 13th 2010 by Datamation.com Staff
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A study by a top Microsoft researcher says that many common security practices aren't worth the economic costs.

Boston Globe: A report by Microsoft researcher Cormac Herley questions some of the most fundamental advice from security experts. “Most security advice simply offers a poor cost-benefit trade-off to users,” he writes.

Using some rough calculations, he estimates that a minute of American computer users' time every day for a year is worth about $16 billion. Therefore, any computer security measure that requires users to spend an extra minute every day should result in $16 billion annual benefit. Many, like the common advice to change your password regularly, seem to fall short of this measure.

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