Home page logo

basics logo Security Basics mailing list archives

Re: Suggested "safe" password length
From: "Simon Gray" <simong () desktop-guardian com>
Date: Mon, 17 Nov 2003 10:36:24 -0000

I believe that you must keep the human factor in mind when deciding things
like this.

While the 'IQyJ$4)xv&' password described below may be quite secure from a
technology standpoint, how secure is the system when the only way your
users can >remember their password is to write it down and tape to their

It depends how often the password is used and what type of users they are,
if the user has to enter the password several times a day, they will soon
remember it.

If you wanted to be really picky, whats to stop somebody installing a key
logger and logging the password that way? Regardless of the length it'll
still get used.

The human factor can not be ignored!
Exactly true, this is why we don't use passwords we use peoples mobile
phone's instead as a kind of token. If you want a secure system with
passwords, then you either enforce it, or you reduce your security and allow
easy to remember passwords.

As I said in my previous email: 'this does depend on what the
password is authenticating you to? (Nuclear reactor? or your gym locker?)'
for the strength you'll need.

It's finding the balance for your situation.


Simon Gray
Desktop Guardian Ltd

Developers of Identrica
mobile phone based authentication

The Presidio integrates PGP data encryption and XML Web Services security to 
simplify the management and deployment of PGP and reduce overall PGP costs 
by up to 80%.
FREE WHITEPAPER & 30 Day Trial - 

  By Date           By Thread  

Current thread:
[ Nmap | Sec Tools | Mailing Lists | Site News | About/Contact | Advertising | Privacy ]