Our View: Like passwords for chocolate


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From the hall of marketing oddities comes a publicity stunt from Infosecurity Europe, which threw politically correct caution to the wind in April when it released the results of an experiment saying that women were four times likelier than men to give up their passwords in exchange for chocolate.

But that's just the hook that draws eyeballs to the press release, which contains more substantive (if alarming) facts about how willing people are to give out their personal information.

For example, 61% of people gave their birth date when told it would validate the findings, and researchers were able to ascertain that more than half of those interviewed use the same password for everything.

But we wonder if the results would have been more useful if the study had focused on money instead. That's often the true motivation for data breaches and, as far as we know, has no gender bias.

--Beth Pariseau

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This was first published in July 2008

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