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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Logins, Passwords, and PINs the Rest of The Story

We dealt with the avalanche of LPPs that have to be juggled on a daily basis. Now onto the ones I use less frequently. The ones I have little hope of ever remembering. These include:

BONUS POINTS: Of course all those credit cards also have special bonuses or points or something all available for exciting viewing in your very own account using of course, your very own special loginpassword and PIN.

On line shopping! Every single place I have ever ordered from, knows it's me. Goodness sakes, didn't they initiate the sale by emailing me my very own personal picks along with special pricing for being their very best customer? To take advantage of all of this, I only need to login, enter my password, and my special best customer account number, plus the coupon code from the back of a catalog that is in the recycle bin at home and the today only special discount code. These codes are not permanent it is just that I didn't write them down and to back up several screens to find it puts me at the beginning. I found out the hard way that I am now back to my very own special offer page. Nothing was saved to my shopping cart so if I really want to actually purchase something I have to start all over again. Go "shopping" and find each item on it's page; select color, size, and quantity to add each item to the shopping cart all over again.

GROCERY SHOPPING Well of course, I am a smart shopper, I just forgot my card. I can use my phone number? Which one did I use? It would depend on when I got the card or did hubs set it up. What phone number would he have used?

BILLS At first it was great, they sent the information to my bank, I got a reminder from the bank and could easily set up a payment. Then the utility companies decided to protect my privacy and I can only get the bill reminder from my bank. I have to LOGIN to the utility company's website and  e-n-t-e-r my very own assigned @%$^&#'s . That would allow me to see the total due and the due date. After I tried unsuccessfully several times to LOGIN I am denied access. By then I have to log back into the bank account because I have been signed off due to inactivity to protect my security.

I have mostly solved the amount due and due date by asking for equal pay, which is never equal for the electric company, but works well for the gas company. For the electric company I add a few dollars each time to what I paid the month before. At the end of their accounting year they send me an overpayment check. Hey, it works for me.

5 email addresses 
ADD Uploading codes

I belong to several wonderful ones all of which have so much help and information at my finger tips, if only I could remember my ... 

DOCTOR Contacting my doctor is done online and it is so quick 

                                       and easy to order

PRESCRIPTIONS online and never run out, if only I knew the prescription numbers.

There are so many LOGINS, PASSWORDS, and PINS I quit counting. I am sure there are more to add to the list, but I couldn't remember them all. That did make me feel better, it's not memory loss it's simply  too many numbers to ever remember.

It's gotten so bad I quit writing down all my logins, passwords and necessary PINs and just pick up the phone and call. Of course my husband is also frustrated because he expects me to remember all of his LPPs as well. We are often both on the phone.

Really, I am trying to remember them all, but am giving in to requesting my password via email. That way in a few minutes I am allowed to create a whole new password, which makes my new LLP file system obsolete. I hate to admit it, but about 92 minutes ago I had to phone. Again. Currently I am listening to non-stop commercials about the joy of doing everything online. It is interspersed with a static noise I think is supposed to be their hold music. Wait, there's a voice, gotta go.

"Hi, can you help mee...."  Oh CRAP it's another commercial. 
                    still on hold!                                                                                    


Monday, August 8, 2011

Logins, Passwords, and PINs at the 9-5

How Many Passwords Are Too Many? Vol. 1

The other day I couldn't remember a password or was it the login, maybe it was both. Could it have been my PIN that was missing? This bothered me. I started to worry, was this a sign of Alzheimer's setting in? The more I worried, the more times I had to re-enter another guess at something. I know the security is for my own good; you know to keep anyone from messing with my accounts on my computer. 

My accounts are so pathetic it would take a fool to mess with them. That could be part of the problem. I must be that fool, because I do have to mess with them, pretty much daily. I HAVE to know all those logins, passwords and PINS.
In desperation I decided to organize only my current logins, passwords and PINS. It won't take that long if I make a list. I list started with... 

BANKS: 2 personal bank accounts, mortgage account, 401K account, and 2 separate businesses bank accounts, a business loan account, my 89 year old mother's bank accounts.

                  Six so far, two or three security items each.. about 14 +/- 1 or 2

WORK: point of sales, internet sales program, bookkeeping, and payroll accounts. Each computer uses its very own login and password and requires that the passwords be changed every 90 days. The online accounts with our vendors are all different but if you want technical details, you better LOGIN. How many more LPPs is that?

CREDIT CARDS: 2 are mine; mom = 1, hubs = 2, company cards 2 plus 3 employee cards = 12 more LPPs.

TAXES: 5 entities. Basic annual taxes, employment taxes, sales taxes for states. All require fillings and payments be electronically. That includes monthly filing, quarterly filing and annual filing. Each also requires EF transfers for funds. = 21 separate LPPs  to add to the complexity of life, most of the PINs are random items assigned by the other end. 

DEBIT CARDS: More randomness I did not choose. I had accepted the bank's offer. It would be handy for emergency use, like being stranded in the middle of the desert or something. Not for easy access to forgetfully overdraw my bank.

But my bank also requires me to use it monthly or the dang card is cancelled. I found out the hard way when it actually was an emergency and I REALLY needed to use it. Even though I had resorted to having the PIN tattooed on my arm just in case, it didn't work. 
The situation required a phone call, at which point I was to push a hundred buttons, hope and pray I am now waiting in the proper hold queue. 

The lousy hold music is constantly interrupted by messages, 'Do you I know that you can log in and get the information on line?" Every time a person's voice interrupts I quickly respond with, "Oh hi, can you help me retrieve my login, password and pin?" before I discover it is the same deaf lady. To make matters worse, they alternate between a man's message and a woman's. If it weren't for the interruptions I could actually get some work done while the hold music drones on. It makes me loose focus on what work I could be doing if they were not bombarding me every few seconds with the question, "Did you know you can get all this information on line at"  How could they not know that. Do they not see I am waiting for the login help line? 

Sometimes the hold is so long, I miss coffee breaks, bathroom breaks, lunch and dinner. If I needed an urgent trip to the hospital to birth a baby, I would not hang up. I can't lose my place in the hold queue. It would push me over the edge to start all over again tomorrow.

I quit counting while on hold but I think it is around 48, but I am not done.

Really I am trying to redo and update them all in a system I can use when I need it. 
I will do that soon, but for now; hang on, wait a sec..   

"Oh hi, can you help mee...."  Oh CRAP.                                                                                            
                    still on hold!                                                                                    

Now, where was I..?