Fun_People Archive
2 Feb

Date: Thu,  2 Feb 95 00:03:24 PST
From: Peter Langston <psl>
To: Fun_People
Subject: Security

[I remember someone who used to work for me who had a novel take on passwords;
his view was: "I always make the system passwords impossibly difficult to
remember - as a security measure."  Here's an entirely different approach... -psl]

Begin forwarded message:
Forwarded-by: bostic@CS.Berkeley.EDU (Keith Bostic)
Subject: Your files are in safe hands... with Bob
Forwarded-by: David Boyce <>
From: (Tim Garon, Infosecurity News)

Igor Chudov ( wrote:
: Bear Giles ( wrote in
: : I find it hard to give credence to this, but then again we're
: : talking about Microsoft....

: : A coworker reported that a local newspaper (Boulder _Daily Camera_,
: : 24 Jan 1995) had an article on "Bob", and says that among other
: : things Bob will ask for your password three times, and if you can't
: : provide one it's real friendly and asks if you want to change your
: : password to something easier to remember/type!

: : I thought this was a really dumb plot point in an old _Miami Vice_
: : episode, but decided to toss it out to the wolves in case this
: : description is accurate.

: : Has anyone else heard about this "feature"?

: Yep, I read it, too. I think it was a mistake of some news agency, it sounds
: way too stupid to anybody who has ever used passwords.

As stupid as it may sound, it's true. We (being the editorial staff at
Infosecurity News) found it odd, so we went stright to the source: the
friendly folks at Microsoft. This is what they said: Yes Bob allows you
to change your password if you enter it incorrectly three times. However,
Bob is intended for home PCs where there is generally only one user.

I guess I won't be putting Bob on my home PC. My roommate could easily
scan all my files even though I think they're password protected.

[=] © 1995 Peter Langston []