USPS sign-on fail
Sunday, December 6, 2015 by Dave Winer

Signing up for was not pleasant and ultimately didn't get me the send-mail-via-email feature I was trying to sign up for. 

  1. They insisted my password has to have a lowercase and uppercase letter, a number and a punctuation character. Please, this is not very friendly, esp when I want to sign in via a mobile device whose keyboards are inefficient at case and special chars. I'm perfectly capable of generating a unique password that's highly random without any of those constraints. 
  2. When they asked me questions to prove my identity they asked about a mortgage I didn't have, and offered a set of streets I've never lived on. Clearly they think I'm impersonating myself, but they are the ones making a mistake. I never flunk these tests. I think it's because they're using my address, which is a rental, as a way of figuring out who I am. I think I just found out inadvertently who owns the mortgage on my apartment. Not a huge security leak, but it might be a leak. It's good that they're innovating, but it didn't work for me.
  3. I'm no longer giving answers to "security" questions. I don't see why someone who knows where I was born should be able to read my mail, a fact that's on my Wikipedia profile page. These questions are a very weak link in our online security. Let's stop doing this! (Of course these are required, so I just gave wrong answers, saying I was born in Egypt, and my favorite sports team is the Canucks (not the actual answers I gave)).