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May 10, 2005

Passwords for $3 a pop

Verisign have found that the majority of people asked were willing to reveal their passwords for a $3 Starbucks coffee token. "According to the company, one executive who was too busy to respond to questions but still wanted a gift card sent his administrative assistant back to complete the survey. The assistant promptly revealed both the executive's password and her own." The survey team have no obvious/legal way to verify the passwords (which is presumably why this was labelled a "light-hearted and unscientific survey") but the take-home message in terms of a general disregard for information security is pretty clear.