Monday, February 8, 2016

Who lives with you?

Who lives with you? It is a prying question. Imagine if you are asked this question in front of your spouse. You confidently say your spouse's name. But the interrogator says that it is not the correct answer. What happens next? You are likely to sweat. You nervously steal glances at your spouse. You start praying your partner has heard neither the question nor the response to the question. You would also have run through the permutations and combinations of this answer in your mind in a flash, reliving your life and relationships. No doubt it is an embarrassing situation. Even though our closets might be empty, we might still fear what might tumble out of it. One of my friends underwent this situation recently.

Before I tell you the story of my friend, I want to bring your attention to another phenomenon in our lives. Passwords. On a typical day, we use passwords in countless ways. We use them to log into our laptops, our work emails, personal emails, bank accounts, social media accounts and what not. Although companies are trying to minimise the number of time we enter passwords in the name of unified login or a seamless experience, we are still far from this projected simple future. In the meantime, we have software serving as a locker for all our passwords and the key memorable phrase to be used to reset our passwords if all other measures fail. The key memorable phrases have evolved from the mother's maiden name to other questions. One such question posed a threat to my friend on that fateful day. The question was simple. Who lives with you? I am not sure why it becomes a critical question to establish the identity of a person. These days, the warm confines of privacy are rapidly disappearing with the rise of social media and the sharing culture. So no question is impossible to crack for anyone with evil intent. 

So my friend was holding on to the phone trying to think what was the right answer to the question to establish the identity. According to my friend's account of the events unfolding, the ears of the spouse had already perked up to catch the answer. While my friend spent a lot of time describing the intrusive nature of the partner, there was no mention of my friend's mental state. Was my friend's heart beating too fast? Was my friend sweating? Then it dawned on my friend. My friend said the name of their child. My friend had recorded the name of their child as the answer to that question. Technically, my friend is correct. I am sure the resourceful hackers will not be able to decipher the answer quickly.


Photo Courtesy: Ognian Mladenov

Tags: Musings, Memorable Phrase, Password

1 comment:

  1. Interesting! Like the way you built and maintained the suspense. :)

    ReplyDelete

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