Author Topic: It can be very expensive to lose a password.  (Read 2588 times)

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Offline DrG

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It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« on: January 13, 2021, 12:19:21 am »
Stefan Thomas, a German-born programmer living in San Francisco, has two guesses left to figure out a password that is worth, as of this week, about $220 million.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/12/technology/bitcoin-passwords-wallets-fortunes.html

- Invest in science - it pays big dividends. -
 

Offline JohnnyMalaria

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2021, 01:33:22 am »
Such is the reward of greed - pain and suffering.
 

Offline Bud

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2021, 02:45:01 am »
There does not seem to be any story of greed in this case.
Facebook-free life and Rigol-free shack.
 
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Offline SVFeingold

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2021, 06:05:23 am »
More like the reward of thinking the NSA is out there, ready to throw all its resources at the problem of decrypting some random dude's flash drive. "Better put this in an encrypted file container! On a hidden volume that's also encrypted! Then encrypt that with Bitlocker open-source platform developed by some dude which now hasn't been supported for 10 years! Then put that in a physically encrypted drive that wipes itself after 10 guesses! That'll keep these nuclear launch codes few hundred dollars safe for sure!"

There's definitely a bit of schaudenfruede watching crypto nerds reap the consequences of their insufferable crowing about how no amount of security is ever possibly good enough for those tedious pictures of your tomato garden.

But in seriousness I feel for the guy. Can't imagine what that's like, knowing a new life is inside a little flash drive, if only you could open it. Wonder what kind of physical security the Ironkey has to protect against opening it up and dumping the contents of the flash. Still encrypted presumably, but at least you get unlimited guesses. Unless it's a custom ASIC with integrated flash or something.

This is one of those times where I feel like the best solution is to call up the OEM and say "Hey, you can have $50 million of this if you can extract the contents." They'll probably think of something!
 

Offline Mechatrommer

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2021, 06:34:51 am »
Such is the reward of greed - pain and suffering.
There does not seem to be any story of greed in this case.
stupidity and ignorance may describe it. stupidity: that think any modern technology may solve any problem. ignorance: simply an ancient trait such as keeping a piece of important paper somewhere safe. he can put a hard drive in sealed vacum bag, but not a piece of paper containing password :palm: what kind of millionaire is that? good riddance.
It's extremely difficult to start life.. one features of nature.. physical laws are mathematical theory of great beauty... You may wonder Why? our knowledge shows that nature is so constructed. We simply have to accept it. One could describe the situation by saying that... (Paul Dirac)
 
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Offline Ed.Kloonk

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2021, 06:37:16 am »
Yeah. Exactly.

It's very hard to feel sorry for these people.
 

Offline SVFeingold

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2021, 06:42:28 am »
what kind of millionaire is that? good riddance.

Well, he wasn't a millionaire at the time. Easy to say in hindsight. At the time it was like 500 bitcoins to buy a pizza. Nobody thought they'd be worth $40k a piece in such a short time span. I figure more care would have been taken were that the case.
 
I sympathize less with the people today who lose their wallets in this fashion. But it's kinda hard to fault someone for 10 years ago not predicting the future and going out of their way to secure what was worth maybe a few dollars at best. How often do you do the same?
 

Offline Ed.Kloonk

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2021, 06:47:08 am »
what kind of millionaire is that? good riddance.

Well, he wasn't a millionaire at the time. Easy to say in hindsight. At the time it was like 500 bitcoins to buy a pizza. Nobody thought they'd be worth $40k a piece in such a short time span. I figure more care would have been taken were that the case.
 
I sympathize less with the people today who lose their wallets in this fashion. But it's kinda hard to fault someone for 10 years ago not predicting the future and going out of their way to secure what was worth maybe a few dollars at best. How often do you do the same?

This highlights the importance of regularly monitoring your consolidated wealth. All of it. The things that go boom when you aren't looking is a oft spoken tale.
 

Offline Mechatrommer

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2021, 07:28:49 am »
what kind of millionaire is that? good riddance.
Well, he wasn't a millionaire at the time. Easy to say in hindsight. At the time it was like 500 bitcoins to buy a pizza.
it probably was not costly enough to generate bitcoin back then. so i guess its a fair game. this also applies to many other areas including such as agriculture, my late father came with interest in this area so i can give some examples. you grow some trees and then cut them down to grow another trees because they were not worth enough, but then research found something and the value sky rocketted, ahh shoot, what can we say? we cant go back the process also skyrocketted... life moves on.
It's extremely difficult to start life.. one features of nature.. physical laws are mathematical theory of great beauty... You may wonder Why? our knowledge shows that nature is so constructed. We simply have to accept it. One could describe the situation by saying that... (Paul Dirac)
 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2021, 09:42:53 am »
It was worth nothing back then, and because the owner has no password it is worth nothing now.
Nothing lost and nothing gained.
 

Offline Mechatrommer

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2021, 10:46:58 am »
something can be gained though for certain. if he format the HDD and use it for something else useful.
It's extremely difficult to start life.. one features of nature.. physical laws are mathematical theory of great beauty... You may wonder Why? our knowledge shows that nature is so constructed. We simply have to accept it. One could describe the situation by saying that... (Paul Dirac)
 

Offline nigelwright7557

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2021, 12:43:09 pm »
Passwords can be a nightmare.
Especially if you start using same one for many sites.
I got my facebook account hacked.
They got into it and changed the email address as my email address no longer was correct.

I am a bit more careful now and use a different password for less important sites and a special one for high security on bank accounts etc.

 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2021, 01:12:38 pm »
I am a bit more careful now and use a different password for less important sites and a special one for high security on bank accounts etc.
And your pincode is 7557 right  :-DD
 

Offline madires

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #13 on: January 13, 2021, 02:05:18 pm »
There are many similar cases more and a lot of fraud, e.g. SIM swapping followed by transfer of crypto currency. An article a few days ago mentioned a total loss of about US$ 2 billion caused by crypto currency fraud.
 

Offline nigelwright7557

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2021, 08:51:27 pm »
I am a bit more careful now and use a different password for less important sites and a special one for high security on bank accounts etc.
And your pincode is 7557 right  :-DD

Come I aint that stupid, I use 7558 !

 

Offline S. Petrukhin

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #15 on: February 15, 2021, 10:10:38 am »
Random money, not earned by hard work...  :)
And sorry for my English.
 

Offline AntiProtonBoy

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2021, 02:33:33 am »
This is why password managers were invented.

That being said, even that is not fool proof. I had a wallet password saved in my password manager 2 years ago. Fast forward this month, I wanted to unlock the wallet, so I could export the private keys. No problem, get the the wallet password from the manger, and I'm ready to go. Nope. Didn't work. Fuck. Something is not right, as this is a generated password and I remember copying it from a text editor (where I temporarily saved the password) and pasted into the wallet; which ultimately was saved into the password manger. It was a long password. Did I leave out a character? Did I add a character? So I figured,  maybe there is a space or a tab added by accident. Nope. Turns out, the password included a newline character. I must have accidentally copied the newline character from the text editor way back then.  :palm: Quite a relief, but man I feel stupid for not testing the wallet.
 

Offline nigelwright7557

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #17 on: March 06, 2021, 01:49:14 am »
I found you have to be careful using same email address and password.
I did this with facebook and others and lost my facebook account.
So now I have a low security password for things that dont matter and high security pass word for important stuff.
Some webpages harvest emails and passwords and then use them to hack other accounts.

 

Offline madires

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #18 on: March 06, 2021, 12:25:45 pm »
Using the same password for multiple accounts is a big no-no. If a bad guy gets hold of your password then he'll have access to multiple accounts, not just one. And your email accounts require additional attention since most accounts are tied to email addresses (-> PW reset). I strongly recommend to use a password manager.
 

Offline cdev

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #19 on: March 09, 2021, 08:26:48 pm »
Youre nuts to only have two passwords.


I'm not even storing important passwords on computers any more
"What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away."
 

Offline rdl

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Re: It can be very expensive to lose a password.
« Reply #20 on: March 12, 2021, 09:27:09 pm »
I'm not even storing important passwords on computers any more

Same here. I write them down, all on a single sheet of paper and keep it in my top desk drawer.

Also, I made the mistake some years ago of using, not the same but similar passwords for several accounts and somehow somebody got hold of one of them. I think by way of an unpatched router security issue. I had to change all my passwords and now they are nothing at all alike. And I bought a real router (Ubiquiti) that gets regular updates, not like the cheap consumer crap I had before - which was never updated in over 8 years..
 


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