Password Directory

February 11, 2011 by  

Where Do You Keep Your Passwords?

In your head?  Do you keep them on the computer?  Yep… I tried it once, until my computer got a virus and I lost the list because I didn’t have it backed up. I’ve learned.

I know there are secure sites that you can keep them.  I haven’t tried that yet. Trust issue I guess.  I know that if I was backing up my computer every night instead of every week.. I wouldn’t have to worry.

But.. I keep them written down, the old fashion way I suppose.  In a notebook.

notebook Any notebook will do. This is one that I had made up through Avery for a review. I love it, and thought it would be fun to use.  I used to have it in a plain pink notebook, but the binder clip was slipping, so I just changed to this one.

I don’t do anything fancy.  I used a protective sleeve for the first few pages just for protection

password directory

On the back of the main sheet I have my blogger “will” as such.  Have you thought of that?  If something happens to you, who knows how to get into your sites and let your friends know or shut them down if need be?  My husband wouldn’t have a clue, nor would he care as he said. He said the last thing on his mind if something happened to me would be worrying about my blogs.

I have at least gotten through to him where the information is, and who he can contact in order for them to help take care of any accounts, blogs etc.. that need to be seen to.

I did not go out and buy anything when I made up my password directory.

What I did need:
1) notebook
2) paper
3) dividers
4) computer/printer

I didn’t have enough dividers, so I made my own.  I just got colored paper, and used a sticky tab for the letters.

I did this about 2 years ago and they are still working great.  Of course dividers would be ideal, but I want to let you know that simple works!
I also like to reinforce the edges of the papers.   I didn’t have to do it on all of them, but I did it on the most frequently used pages.
So you have the notebook set up.  What I did next was to create an excel form.  Nothing fancy or flowery (not that  I don’t love that stuff, but I just don’t think about it when I am making up a form for myself)

I save this and make copies to use in each letter of the alphabet.

Here is how I set it up.  On the far left the date – so anytime I add an entry, I date it. I write down the html for the site, not just the site name.

I then write down what email I use. I have a personal and a work email.  I also write down the user name if there is one for the site.

Then in the next column I write the password.  Be sure to write if things are capital or there are spaces. A zero might look more like a letter “O”. So be careful when you write them out.
The last column I wrote because I have 3 blogs. But I will sometimes just write notes in this space.

That is it.  I write any new password down, I write new sites I join, I write anything that I might need to remember having to do with getting onto or into a site.

I have heard some people say that they just keep it all in their heads.  If they are able to do that, wonderful.  But.. what happens if something should happen to that head and it can’t remember things anymore?  #just sayin!
password directory

I keep my password directory near my chair for easy access.  I do not announce it to my kids, nor do I have the front of my notebook labeled. It isn’t something that everyone should know or have access to (other than my husband)

Your Mission if you chose to take it is: Make a Password Directory!

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Comments

19 Responses to “Password Directory”
  1. Becky Smith says:

    I love this idea! I am forever searching through my file cabinet or, even worse, my head for passwords. I’m going to give your method a try! Thanks!

  2. Alexandra says:

    I keep my passwords in a journal which has worked for years but I really like how you have your password directory organizied. I am going to accept the mission and re-organize my password directory. Thanks for the inspiration.

  3. Heather S says:

    This is a brilliant and necessary idea. I feel ashamed at how I deal with this issue. Thanks for giving me the swift kick and the inspiration to do what I need to do in this area.

    With gratitude,
    Heather

  4. Marci says:

    Sandy,

    This is a creative idea, but what if someone finds our stash of passwords? I know you said that you don’t announce it, but you kind of did by posting it on the blog. If I were you I would place it somewhere other than where you mentioned on the blog post. I guess as long as you don’t keep the vital passwords (i.e. banking) in there, it would be ok. Just thought I would let you know what I think.

  5. Sandy says:

    Be sure to stop back and share what you do Heather!

  6. Sandy says:

    Cool! I’ll be anxious to see it Alexandra

  7. Sandy says:

    Be sure to take pictures and come back to share Becky! Thanks

  8. Samantha says:

    Great idea! Perhaps I love it so much because I do have a password directory notebook already! But, it desperately needs cleaned out and I really like the idea of a standardized form – I just have sheets of notebook paper.

    Samantha

  9. Adrian says:

    After having several break-ins, I would be terrified to have my passwords written down, particularly if they are labeled as passwords. For that reason, I also never use the “remember this password” option on my laptop. If it is stolen, you’d be giving them easy access.

    However, I also have a LOT of passwords I need to remember, both at work and at home. I have a two-pronged approach to this. First I have 3 levels of passwords that I use routinely. A simple password for low security sites like the library, my scrapbooking sites, etc. A mildly complex password that I use for hackable sites like Facebook and Twitter, and a seriously complex password that would be impossible to guess for banking sites. Then I keep all this information in a password-protected and backed up Excel spreadsheet labeled “Important Info”.

    However, I do think it is a good idea to leave on-line instructions for your husband or friend in case of serious illness. I was so impressed with Anissa Mayhew’s husband who was able to put the word out to her friends via her blog and her Twitter account after she suffered her stroke. My husband wouldn’t have a clue in the world that it would even be helpful to tell my online friends if something happened to me.

  10. Allysgrandma says:

    I have mine listed in an old Daytimer. But in cleaning out my files, I just found a form and I think I will copy you! Especially now that I have more for my elderly mother, who does not have a computer. I do banking stuff for her. Great job!

  11. Sandy says:

    Very good points made Adrian!! I appreciate you writing this out to help others!

  12. That’s a good point, about a blogging will. My DH knows enough about my blog that he could write a post, and/or stop the blog…and he knows where my passwords are, so he could go to my sites; and/or respond to my emails as they come in. something to think about.

    I need to get my blogging notes more in order, ugh. I’ve tried to organize, but then they get to be a huge mess!! I didn’t know they still made those reinforced “hole” thingies. I need some of those, for my frequently referred to pages.

  13. Sandy says:

    I actually had made a blogging notebook before, when I first started blogging because my mindset wasn’t “virtual” yet. I don’t use it anymore, but maybe it would be a good thing to still show others. Who’s to say I won’t need it again in the future.

  14. Matts says:

    That’s a unique way of keeping passwords. Never thought of that way, but thanks for giving me an idea. Until now, I just keep my passwords on an excel file.

  15. Barb S. says:

    Thanks for this idea! It didn’t take long at all to do, and I’m very glad to have it done. I organized mine by type rather than alphabetically: shopping, financial/billing, blogs, productivity, etc.

  16. Wow! I would’ve never thought of having a “blog will” but that makes SO much sense! Thanks for the ideas! And thanks for linking them to Fancy This Fridays! We’re so thrilled to see your new link ups everytime! :)

  17. Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I have truly enjoyed browsing your blog posts.
    In any case I’ll be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again soon!

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