Do you? I do and I’ve been doing it since I said “I do.” And if you are married or at least in a committed lifelong relationship, knowing each other’s passwords is probably expected. Today, sharing passwords has become a sign of commitment, a signal of love and devotion, like a varsity sweater or friendship ring. But what’s happens when the relationship goes sour (with a divorce rate of 50% to back me up here)?
Chances are good, that your significant other (if they have your passwords) will engage in revenge tactics with your account after a breakup. Despite public awareness of data leaks and high profile celebrity photo scandals, we continue to take risks by sharing personal information and intimate photos with our partners and friends, thus putting ourselves at risk for a “revenge” situation.
28% of people have regretted (once they broke up) sending intimate content and 32% have asked their ex-partner to delete the personal content. But despite these risks, 36% of Americans still plan to send sexy or romantic photos to their partners via email, text and social media on Valentine’s Day.
People need to be more informed about the consequences of sharing so much private information with their partners. Sharing passwords with your partner might seem harmless, but it could and often does result in critical personal information falling into the wrong hands and landing on a public platform for all to see.
Today, McAfee released the study, Love, Relationships, and Technology: When Private Data Gets Stuck in the Middle of a Breakup, which examines at the pitfalls of sharing personal data in relationships and discloses how breakups can lead to exposure of private data.
Of those surveyed, the actions one’s partner took that led to a person exposing personal data are:
Breaking up with me (26.6%)
Calling off Wedding (14.1%)
Posting pictures with someone else (12.5%)
To make sure this doesn’t happen to you, I’ll make it easy for you. Think twice—digital is forever. It will haunt you and follow you. Just don’t do it.
Robert Siciliano is an Online Security Expert to McAfee. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Mobile was Hacked! Disclosures.