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Old 11-13-2011, 04:06 AM   #1
Priscillux
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problem with passwords

Hello,

Whenever I type in a password on the PRS-T1's browser to log in to websites, each character appears on the screen for a brief period of time (about a second) before it is replaced by a dot. That happens despite the fact that I have the option "Show Password" unchecked. Is this a security risk, and if so, is there a workaround?

I'd be very grateful for any help/suggestions.
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Old 11-13-2011, 04:28 AM   #2
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Yes, it's there to allow checking you typed the right thing. And it's not a security risk unless someone is looking at your screen
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Old 11-13-2011, 04:52 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Priscillux View Post
Hello,

Whenever I type in a password on the PRS-T1's browser to log in to websites, each character appears on the screen for a brief period of time (about a second) before it is replaced by a dot. That happens despite the fact that I have the option "Show Password" unchecked. Is this a security risk, and if so, is there a workaround?

I'd be very grateful for any help/suggestions.
Not sure if you already know this, but most password sites seem to do this, I don't think it's a "T1" thing. It's probably just that the slow e-ink refresh/delay is making it more noticeable to you.
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:39 AM   #4
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If you had 'Show Password' checked, you could see the entire password, not just one letter at a time.

As you have it, it's working the way it's supposed to - so you're not typing completely blind, but the entire password does not show.
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Old 11-13-2011, 01:00 PM   #5
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Hi, this brief display of the letter before obscuring it is a standard behaviour for password entry on Android smartphones and iPads - hence the T1 software is behaving "normally".
I work at testing using many different cellphones and tablets so I've seen this appear as a "new feature" in the later devices.
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Old 11-13-2011, 01:07 PM   #6
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It's pretty essential on a touch keyboard - they're just not accurate enough for blind typing. The last thing you want is to type in a password and then not know what it was.
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Old 11-13-2011, 02:45 PM   #7
Priscillux
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EowynCarter, seajewel, khalleron, pmcnz, HarryT:

Thank you all for replying.

I understand from what you're saying that this is standard behaviour for Android-based devices, so my Sony isn't doing anything out of the ordinary. Yes, it's quite convenient to be able to see each character as you enter it, because the lack of a standard keyboard makes mistakes more likely.

However, isn't there a risk that the password be intercepted if the characters are visible even briefly? Sorry if the question sounds naive to those of you with a better than mine grasp of the technical aspects of password protection and security, but I'm reluctant to put in, say, my email password unless I'm quite reassured it's fully protected from "intruders".

seajewel you're saying that:
Quote:
but most password sites seem to do this, I don't think it's a "T1" thing. It's probably just that the slow e-ink refresh/delay is making it more noticeable to you.
So do you mean that this is what happens normally, only it's not noticeable because the refresh rate on, e.g. a computer screen, would be a lot faster?
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Old 11-13-2011, 02:48 PM   #8
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Maybe it doesn't happen on a computer, I don't recall at this moment, but it always happens on my iPhone (which I am using right now)
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Old 11-13-2011, 03:01 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Priscillux View Post
I understand from what you're saying that this is standard behaviour for Android-based devices, so my Sony isn't doing anything out of the ordinary.
It's standard behaviour on all touch-screen devices. Nothing to do with Android. My iPad, on which I'm typing this, does it too.

Quote:
However, isn't there a risk that the password be intercepted if the characters are visible even briefly? Sorry if the question sounds naive to those of you with a better than mine grasp of the technical aspects of password protection and security, but I'm reluctant to put in, say, my email password unless I'm quite reassured it's fully protected from "intruders".
The software you're typing the password into is going to store it the same way regardless of what appears or doesn't appear on the screen. The only "risk" is of someone looking over your shoulder. And if what you're typing is that confidential, you shouldn't be using e-mail in the first place. E-mail is not a secure communications medium unless you encrypt it.
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Old 11-13-2011, 03:48 PM   #10
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Depending on the password length, I think you'd probably spot someone looking over your shoulder - and this is the T1, so they'd be squinting as well !

Unless you're a high enough security risk to have journalists with high-power cameras following your every move.......
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Old 11-13-2011, 04:30 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
The software you're typing the password into is going to store it the same way regardless of what appears or doesn't appear on the screen. The only "risk" is of someone looking over your shoulder. And if what you're typing is that confidential, you shouldn't be using e-mail in the first place. E-mail is not a secure communications medium unless you encrypt it.
That's quite reassuring, HarryT, thank you very much (I mean the bit about the software handling the password securely is reassuring, not the bit about e-mail. I guess if we wanted real security we'd have to go back to the olden days of hand-delivered letters -- perhaps pigeon post wasn't such a bad idea after all...).

Quote:
Unless you're a high enough security risk to have journalists with high-power cameras following your every move.......
Not quite yet, carpetmojo, not quite yet
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