Friday, 16 April 2010
Remember me - what does it do?
I have often wondered why this little-understood, and often-misused option on the sign-on screen, is there, at all.
The Remember me check box is such a little option, but it can have a profound effect on your security, if you use a computer which has multiple other users - like in an Internet Cafe, or an Office, or, even at home. Why?
Let's look at its function. The Remember me check-box is designed to assist you by automatically logging you in to Blogger, whenever you navigate to the sign-on screen. It is great if you do this a lot, and are the ONLY person using that computer. That's a great idea!
It is a bad idea to use the Remember me check-box if the computer is shared by many, because, maybe one day, you'll forget to sign-out properly, and someone, using the computer immediately after you, will have access to your sign-on details - username and password - still there, for their use!
There is a cookie which expires after two weeks, but that's no good if 1000 different people use that computer after you and each doesn't log-on, or log-off. They'll all be using your sign-on ID! Don't laugh - anything is possible! It happens with monotonous regularity in foreign countries, where many tourists use the Internet Cafes! Race in, race out - forget to log-off!
One thing I always do, if I use an Internet Cafe computer, and after I log-off (completely), is to log-on again, with a fictitious username, like abcdef - password: 12345. Of course, nothing displays, but I feel better. Most times, I use Meebo!
Nah, I'd rather log-in every time, if I had to. I remember who I am and what my password is. If I do forget, I have it written down, anyway. No, it is not stuck on the side of my computer! If you think that sounds ludicrous, visit some friends' houses and see what security means to different people. My youngest daughter trusts me implicitly - that's natural, but the rare occasion, during her regular weekly visit, she often just leaves the computer - logged in to the last screen she viewed! I have to log her out! I hope she is more sensible when she's travelling. I can only hope.
How important is security to you?
(Personally, I log-on to Blogger from my Gmail screen, so I don't use the Remember me function at all, but many bloggers do).