Just in case 2018 wasn't shaping up to be the most stressful time of our lives, here's something else to add to the pile. On May 3, Twitter's password security breach raised panic among social media users when the social media site announced they had found a bug within their system. Hide ya kids, change ya passwords people.
Twitter announced on May 3 that they had discovered a bug that "stored passwords unmasked in an internal log." Despite the panic that naturally comes from news like this, the company assured users that they found "no indication of a breach or misuse by anyone." However, they advised everyone to change their passwords just to be safe. The company went into further detail about the bug in a release on their blog.
We mask passwords through a process called hashing using a function known as bcrypt, which replaces the actual password with a random set of numbers and letters that are stored in Twitter’s system. This allows our systems to validate your account credentials without revealing your password. This is an industry standard. Due to a bug, passwords were written to an internal log before completing the hashing process. We found this error ourselves, removed the passwords, and are implementing plans to prevent this bug from happening again.
To be honest, this explanation kind of went over my head. However, what I can decipher from this is that users' passwords weren't encrypted the way they were supposed to be. This makes passwords more vulnerable and able to be hacked. I'm no technology whiz, but this definitely doesn't seem like good news.
Since Twitter announced their discovery, some users are stressed about their cyber security.
Clearly I'm not the only one totally stressed out about this password glitch. To be honest, I haven't changed any of my passwords in forever, so an update probably wouldn't hurt. However, quickly after the company announced this glitch and urged users to change their passwords, the site seemed to crash for many people.
This definitely isn't the best news to hear. However, here's some irony that might have you chuckling. According to NationalDayCalendar.com, May 3, which is the first Thursday of May, marks World Password Day, and wow, what a way to celebrate. According to whose website, there's a few ways to observe this special occasion, and it looks like Twitter's 300 million users are all doing just that.
The website reads,
Celebrate World Password Day by visiting PasswordDay.org and taking the World Password Day pledge, sharing a password tip on social media, changing an old password to a long, strong one or by turning on two-factor authentication for your important accounts.
In this case, I think I'll be observing Word Password Day by updating all of my login information. I have a feeling I won't be alone in this quest.
Need some help choosing a new password? I've got you covered. In December 2017, The New York Times rounded up a list of the worst passwords of 2017. I understand we have a lot of passwords to remember, but safety always comes first. So, in 2018, try avoiding passwords like "123456," "login," and definitely do not just let "password" be your log in code. There's a reason why so many sites require that annoying one uppercase and one number rule while setting a password. I don't know about y'all, but I want my information nice and protected when it comes to my internet use. Don't y'all?
So tweeters, it's time to dig deep into your creativity and think of the most original and unguessable password in history. Happy brainstorming!