Spooky Password Horror Stories for Friday the 13th

Want to learn how to take the next step in personal and web security? Need a refresher on the very best practices for passwords? These scary password stories remind us why web security is important. Our password best practices can help.

black and white era actress reacts to friday the 13th calendar

Does the thought of forgetting your password or losing access to your website scare you silly? Do your nightmares involve email hacking and viruses sent out to your entire address book? Do news stories about compromised personal information leave you shaking in your boots? In honor of Friday the 13th, we thought we’d share some spooooky tales of password protection gone wrong. But before we gather ‘round the virtual campfire for a few scary stories, let us be clear: If your website is supported by Infomedia, many of these web security horror stories have a happy ending, because we’re standing guard against the Internet boogeymen night and day to be sure your website is secure.

Want to learn how to take the next step in personal and web security? Need a refresher on the very best practices for passwords? Live in Birmingham, Alabama? Then Friday the 13th is your lucky day, because we’re offering free tickets to next week’s Web Security Training at Innovation Depot — click here for your free Lunch & Learn ticket, and read on for tales from the Internet crypt of the most scary horror stories in password protection gone wrong …

Password Horror Story #1: The Possession of Sally Smith

Sally’s website was her pride and joy. It enabled her to sell her products without maintaining a store and she brought it up in conversation every chance she got, pointing out its darling slider and adorable little mobile optimization. Then one day, out of the blue, it did a 180-degree turnaround. The slider was replaced with images of sunglasses, all at rock bottom prices. Her users started receiving spam emails from the site, letting them know what sketchy websites to visit for discount Air Jordans and Coach bags. It turns out that, while Sally loved her site, she didn’t love it enough to create a complex password using letters, numbers, and symbols. The hacker needed only three tries to guess “sally123” and get in, locking Sally out and gaining total control over the site. Now Sally lives with a site she barely recognizes.

Website Security Lesson

The more complex your password is, the better: Intermix numb3rs and l3tt3rs. Choose obscure words that can’t be easily linked back to you (no alma mater mascots, no nautical themes if everyone knows you love your sailboat, etc.). If you’re an Infomedia website client, we already have protocols in place to prevent website hacks like these; but if you notice your site is behaving strangely, give us a call as soon as you have an inkling that something isn’t right.


Password Horror Story #2: The Curse of Frank Doe

Frank doesn’t know what gypsy he snubbed or ancient Egyptian god he angered, but he does know he’s cursed. Every morning, Frank tries to log in to the backend of his site, and every day he sits there, staring at the screen. “Was it my dog’s name?!? My wife’s birthday?!?” he cries out, ripping his shirt in agony. Frank set his password so long ago he can’t remember it. He was relying on his browser to remember it for him, but he had to reinstall the browser and now that information is long gone. Now he goes through the same daily ritual to try and remember, holding on to the hope that one day it’ll break the curse’s chains and come back to him. Until then, he’s left unable to add new content to his site, praying that visitors will just keep re-reading his article on preparing for Y2K.

Website Security Lesson

Don’t rely on your browser to know your passwords for you. You never know when you may encounter an issue that could lose those saved passwords. Entering it manually on a daily basis will help your password stick in your memory so you’ll remember it, browser or no browser. And if you’re an Infomedia web client and you’re locked out? Give us a call — we can reset the password for you.

Password Horror Story #3: The Wandering of Rebecca Jones

Rebecca thought she did everything right. Her password was complex and random, using numbers for letters and having virtually no connection to her. However, she made one fatal mistake: Her password was just a few characters off from other passwords she used. Now, when she goes to log in, she gets the passwords mixed up, re-entering and re-entering until her IP triggers the firewall and she gets blacklisted. She’s so close she can taste it, but she can’t get in. Some say she’s still out there, wandering the wasteland outside the firewall, wailing in misery …

Website Security Lesson

Always try to create unique passwords instead of just using your old password with a different number on the end. Also, when having issues getting in, resist the urge to keep trying and trying. Take a break, try to jog your memory, then go back to it to avoid being blacklisted. Of course, if you are blacklisted, call Infomedia website support right away. In most cases, we can release your IP from the backend of the site in a matter of minutes.

All Is Not Lost: The Password Nightmare Can Be over

Spooked by tales of password security gone wrong? Just choose strong, unique, difficult passwords; be sure to commit them to memory right away, and you’ll have nothing to fear. Want to have a face-to-face chat about best practices? Claim your ticket for our free website security and password training. And we’re always happy to talk if you want to have a one-on-one chat about web support or website security — just contact us using the form below.

About Tyler

Tyler belongs to the Coach Eric Taylor school of programming: “Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose.” That dedication and passion for our clients, plus Tyler’s love of problem solving and teamwork, makes him perfect for us here at Infomedia. At work in his New Bern, North Carolina office, Tyler’s likely to have Podcast Republic on his headphones and a snack of baby carrots and siracha close at hand. When he’s not solving client problems, Tyler’s probably catching up on classics like Tommy Boy, Star Wars, Back to the Future, Indian Jones or The Simpsons. He loves hanging out with his wife, Natalie, their cat, Wilhelmina, and their dogs, Bo and Holly.

See more articles from Tyler Merrels

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