How Romney Could Have Avoided Having His Hotmail Account Hacked

Fri., Jun. 8, 2012 6:42 PM EST
by Terry Shropshire

An investigation is underway to learn the identity of the individual who successfully breached Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney Hotmail and Dropbox accounts. Some may mistakingly believe that this is not a big deal. But remember: another person was given a year-long jail sentence for breaking into Sarah Palin’s email during the 2008 presidential election.

But the issue remains: How Romney could have avoided having his Hotmail account hacked.

Some cyberspace connoisseurs suggested that Romney should not have had a hotmail account holding such important information in the first place. Others, such as Jesse Lipson, the VP of data sharing at computing firm Citrix, said what email platform the GOP candidate has was irrelevant.

Lipson list the ways Romney’s security compromise could have been averted:

1. Lipson said that the single best thing a person can do to protect themselves from “dictionary attacks” — where hackers try to use common words or phrases as passwords — is to make up complex, but memorable, passwords and security questions.

2. Users should also create different passwords for different sites, he added.

“This is a great sobering reminder for people to have a strong password,” Lipson told mashable.com. “It’s also important to come up with different passwords for different sites. You get that ripple effect if you’re using the same password across platforms. Come up with something that you can still remember but has something that has special characters.”

Romney, who clearly is not as savvy with emails and social media as his rival, incumbent President Obama, didn’t adhere to these cybersecurity directives. Had he used complicated set of numbers that only he knows, chances are greatly decreased that hackers would have been able to scale the walls of his internet fortress. And, had Romney applied different passwords, then only his Hotmail would have been hacked and not his Dropbox as well.
Remember that, those of you who have multiple email and social media platforms.
— terry shropshire