Why Changing Your LinkedIn Password Is Not Enough

The news is spreading today that LinkedIn’s database was hacked, and millions of users accounts have been compromised. I keep hearing over and over again to “change your password.” That’s smart. I changed mine this morning. Something that people aren’t saying though is that your other social networking accounts could be at risk as well thanks to LinkedIn’s poor security policies. Here’s why:

If you’re one of the majority of people that use your password on more than one social network (yes, I’m looking at you, because you’re likely one of them – there are even security professionals that make this mistake), the first thing I would do as a hacker once I decrypted the digested passwords obtained is not target your LinkedIn account. Instead, I’d start going through Facebook, Twitter, and even Google and start trying it there where I could do more damage.

Is it the same as your Gmail account? Sweet! I get some LOLz on your behalf, and I can now start making password requests, without your knowledge, to all of your other accounts. Now I can post to the Google+ Pages you manage. I can post to the Facebook Pages you manage. See where I’m getting?

If you were using the same password on LinkedIn as anywhere else important on the web, you need to go now and change your password there as well. Here are some quick tips as you do so:

  • Make it more than just a word and numbers. Make it a sentence, preferably with letters, spaces, numbers, and even non-alphanumeric numbers (like $ and * and others).
  • Keep it at least 10 characters long – if you take my above recommendation, that should be easy because sentences are easy to remember.
  • Use a different password for each social network. You could use a similar password, but add a different set of numbers or words to the end to help you remember which is which. Figure out a system that works for you and that you can remember.
  • If you can, rotate your passwords every so often. Change the numbers or words added to the end. Add a character or two. It’s up to you. That will prevent this from being a problem in the future.


These tips should keep you safe, and they really aren’t very difficult to do. You just have to build a system, and do it!


This article was shared first on Google+.

Published by

jessestay

Jesse Stay has been a pioneer in the space of social media marketing since before it was called "social media marketing". Originally a software developer, Jesse built a tool called SocialToo.com which helped brands like Pepsi, Brittany Spears, and MC Hammer grow their social media presence, and before he knew it brands were coming to him for help to grow their presence in very unique ways. His tool was featured on almost every tech blog and even mainstream news sites like New York Times, Techcrunch, and Mashable. Jesse also spent a brief period working FOR Facebook, Inc., helping them to build out their documentation to help companies integrate Facebook Connect into their websites and mobile apps. Jesse took his skills and helped the LDS Church kick off most of its social media programs. While there he helped launch the award-winning "I'm a Mormon" marketing campaign with global reach worldwide in the millions of views and followers. Jesse established new global programs at the Church to further grow its reach amongst both members and non-members of the Church, working with every department of the Church, also including entities like the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Brigham Young University. He also helped the Church navigate its voice and presence during the Mitt Romney Presidential campaign due to the significant attention the Church was getting at the time. He established the social media advertising techniques and strategies employed at Deseret Digital Media growing over 20 million fans across their news properties in just 6 months, and was featured on AdWeek for his success. As founder and Principal of Stay N Alive, Jesse has developed very unique techniques in social media advertising to help organizations grow presences, within months on minimal budgets, into hundreds of thousands of highly relevant and engaging fans and followers. He designed and teaches social media advertising at LDS Business College. He has helped grow sales, and has a belief that yes, you CAN measure social! Jesse has been featured as one of 10 entrepreneurs to follow on Twitter (next to Biz Stone and Ev Williams, founders of Twitter) by Entrepreneur magazine. Jesse has written 9 books on the topic of social media marketing and development, including Google+ Marketing For Dummies and Facebook All In One For Dummies, and eats, lives, and drinks social media with a personal combined presence of over 600,000 followers on his personal social profiles.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *