Thoughts from an active pensioner who is now somewhat past his Biblical "Use-by date"

"Why just be difficult, when with a little more effort you can be bloody impossible?"

Monday, 18 April 2011

Computers - User names and passwords

Why does life have to be so complicated?
 Why is it so difficult to log-on to an internet account?
I can understand why banks and the like need to have very secure systems, but surely there is not the need for this level of security to post questions on internet forums or to ask a question of a manufacturer's technical support department.

I can guarantee when trying to open a new "account", I can get more error messages than anyone I know!
User name? This usually produces a response from the simple "invalid name" (no clue why), through "invalid characters" to either "too long" or "too short" and "must include a figure".
Passwords are just as bad, producing all the above responses, and probably some that I've forgotten.
Then, even if I manage to complete this phase, there seems to be an odds on chance that I will fail to manage to actually log onto my new account.

This happened this morning; I wanted to join a particular forum dealing with a subject in which I have an interest. I went through all the hassle and in due course received an e-mail advising me to confirm my registration by clicking on a link. What did I get but
Of course the e-mail comes from "no-reply@" the organisation concerned, so a dead end as far as I'm concerned..

The same has happened recently with the Hewlett-Packard web site; I'm busy accumulating new user names and passwords as the same one never seems to work twice. Here there is an added complication that they need your e-mail address and you can't have more that one Username for the same address; fortunately I can have as many as I like on my domain, so I'm working my way through HP1@, HP2@ in order to communicate - they all go into my "postmaster box".

And of course there is the question of why they all demand my age! Except for my bank and the like, everybody else gets the earliest date that their system will accept, usually 1/1/1900. I suspect that statistically there are quite a lot of 111 year olds with "accounts" on the web as it seems to be standard practice adopted by most of my friends.

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