It’s that password thing again

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Yet again, I forgot my iTunes password. I thought I knew it, thought I remembered the symbols I need to type to gain access to my account. Nope, I’m wrong and up pops the question — you know the one.

“Forgot your password?”

It’s like this cyberspace voice gently whispering that since I cannot recall something I created, it will help me if I click on this space. Then it promises to send me a reset so I can come up with another password that I forget almost as soon as I type it.

If I don’t want a reset, it offers me a “reminder” to jog my memory. The reminder is a question I created when I made up the password. Sometimes this helps; often it doesn’t mean a darn thing.

Oh and then we move to the security questions as another option for entrance into internet land. Do they really think a woman who cannot remember her password or the answer to her reminder question will get the correct answers to her security questions?

Now let me think, did I use the name of my high school or my husband’s high school? What pet’s name did I list? Was my dog still alive or did I use my cat’s name? Was my hometown the place I was born or did I choose the place I grew up?

And, if you don’t know your security questions’ answers, you are in a real pickle. The great computer mind out there somewhere is sure you are trying to gain entrance illegally and shuts you out completely.

That’s when you get a message that you tried too many times and should call a real person to get you out of your mess. Oh how I hate to call and tell someone that I cannot remember the name of my first pet.

This gets more complicated when you consider just how many passwords I have to remember. There is one for my bank, one for my book club, one for Facebook and iTunes and every place I shop online. I have one for my email account, one to let me into my computer, one to access our health insurance stuff. And on it goes.

My head spins. I feel faint. That’s it — I have a case of CPF (Chronic Password Forgetfulness) and I’m not sure there is a cure. I had the perfect treatment — write down the passwords. That, I learned, is a bad idea because someone might find them and then that someone could get into all my secret internet stuff. While that might be true, the real problem with writing them down is I won’t remember where I put the list after I write them down. I also have CFWIPS (Chronic Forget Where I Put Stuff), especially stuff I put somewhere I‘m sure I‘ll remember. That place I forget first.

Someone suggested I use the same password for everything then I wouldn’t have as much to remember. Another bad idea say internet gurus. If you only have one password, and that same mysterious someone figures out said password, again, they gain access to my private computer existence. (Not to mention that I’ll probably forget the one password anyway due to my CPF). It is also not a good idea to use password as your password — a little too obvious I guess.

Anyway, I’ve decided until they find a cure for CPF I’ll have fun; play the reset game with gusto and with no judgment of myself for my inability to pull passwords from the deep recesses of my mind.

Hey, CPF could be a password. Oh, not enough characters and one of them must be a number. I know: use CPF and someone’s maiden name and my age. What a great password. Wait, my age changes every year. I may never get into to my iTunes account again.