Steve was robbed recently and they got ahold of his laptop. Even though it's password protected, can they get his personal data? Leo says absolutely. A password is only to keep someone out who walks by. But if they have time, they can use password crackers to brute force the password free. That's really the most serious issue -- if he has any banking information and passwords on it. But considering that the theives may have been homeless, Leo hopes that they likely won't have the tools to take advantage of it.
Paul's UVerse router is starting to get finicky, so he got a new one and wants to use the old one in bridge mode, but it won't work. It keeps asking for a password. Leo says it's unusual for a factory to set a router with a password from default. The password should be in the manual. Paul should try doing a factory reset.
Gina is using Windows 10, and uses a PIN code to access Windows. She's been getting error messages in Chrome, though, that she can't visit a site because she's not an administrator. Leo says that her Chrome browser uses her Google account to access websites, so it shouldn't have anything to do with her Windows account. It may have something to do with using a work account since the IT department may be blocking certain sites. She can just log out of that account in Chrome and log in using her personal Google account.
Laxman is annoyed that when he logs into his phone, he gets "dots" instead of the password itself. How can he change that so he can see the password? Leo says the idea is to stop people from looking over his shoulder and seeing his password as he types it. But Leo says that he should have the option of not having that. The security merits of it are dubious. The dots also show the first letter briefly, and people could easily record the password as its typed on the keyboard. Sadly, unless his app gives him the ability to see it, he's stuck with the dots.
Barry is locked out of his Samsung Galaxy Note 4, and doesn't have a backup. What can he do? Leo says that if Barry had enabled the Android Device Manager, he can change his device's password remotely, along with a host of other security features. That's really his Hail Mary. If that doesn't work, then a factory reset may be his only option.
A recent study done by Google on its security blog comparing the security practices of regular users versus the security experts. Regular users said antivirus topped their list of security priorities, followed by using strong passwords, changing passwords frequently, only visiting websites they know, and not sharing personal information.
Security experts' say installing software updates is the number 1 priority, followed by using unique passwords, use two-factor authentication where its available, use strong passwords, and use a password manager.
Jack wants to password protect a thumb drive. Leo says one way he can do this is to encrypt the drive. He can also use BitLocker in Windows to do it. He can just right click the thumb drive and select the encrypt option. A third party option is TrueCrypt.
On June 15, 2015, password manager LastPass made an announcement that its password database was hacked and some user account information had been stolen. Since LastPass has uses encryption and many layers of protection to slow down hackers, the damage will be minimal for LastPass users. While the hackers may have obtained the database of master passwords, they still don't have immediate access to everyone's passwords. That information has been encrypted, salted, and hashed, so it would take quite a bit of effort to break into it.
Vicky works out of her house in California, while her office is back East. Since they've added McAfee on her computer, her passwords aren't being saved in her browser. Leo's not a fan of McAfee, but since Vicky has no choice, she should check her settings to see if there's something triggered that's preventing it. Can she use post it notes? Leo says sure, because she works at home and that's not going to hurt. She can also keep a notebook.