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Password changes cause mixed feelings among students

As students transition to new passwords through Ohio State’s my.osu.edu, they will have one password to access all parts of their OSU accounts, but will need to change that password every 90 days.

The system change came about through the Identity and Access Management project. The project was created to make university data more secure, to synchronize separate systems and to help users maintain their own account and password, director of customer experience for the Office of the Chief Information Officer, Bob Corbin said in an email.

The main problems reported for the switch were passwords not syncing to all systems, slow pages on my.osu.edu, difficulty with the configuration of wireless security settings and delays in password changes taking effect, Corbin said in an email. OCIO believes these problems were resolved.

Password change delays are not expected for future 90-day password changes. However, students must change their passwords by Oct. 31, Corbin said in an email. OCIO expects many students to wait until the last day to change their password and this could cause the same problems again.

But the 90-day password change has caused mixed feelings for students.

“I don’t like having to change my password all the time,” said Ashley Bowe, a second-year in strategic communication. “It wouldn’t have to be changed so much if we all had stronger passwords to begin with.”

She said combinations of numbers and characters not meaningful to her help make passwords strong.

“I hate having to change it because I thought of such a good one,” Bowe said.

“Forgetting passwords after change is an extra hassle that takes time from accessing academics online,” Bowe said.

Jessica Norman, a third-year in zoology, said she can understand why there is a change in policy.

“It seems inconvenient, but at the same time more secure with all the identity theft and everything going on and people trying to get into your account for whatever reason. It seems smart,” Norman said.

Norman also said the change could be beneficial.

“I don’t have to remember five different passwords for different web sites for the same place,” Norman said. “I think it’s good that it’s connected.”

Marissa Colon, a first-year in linguistics, said it’s annoying to have to change her password every 90 days, but she sees the benefits for increased security.

With no security problems in the past, Eileen Adamo, a fourth-year in speech and hearing science, said she doesn’t necessarily see a point to changing her password.

“When I made it the first time they made sure that you made it so secure that it would be really hard to break into,” Adamo said.

“It was really secure to begin with so I don’t really see the point in having to create a new secure one every 90 days,” Adamo said. “I guess it’s OK. It’s helpful for security but it’s a little annoying.”

Users will be able to reset forgotten passwords with the security questions made when first creating a my.osu.edu password, Corbin said in an email.

If users do not meet the Oct. 31 deadline to change their password and are shut out of their accounts, they can call the IT Service Desk at 614-688-HELP(4357) for help resetting, Corbin said in an email. Any initial or future problems with password resets can be addressed at the same number, by email at 8help@osu.edu, or at walk-in help locations at the BuckeyeBar at Thompson Library or the IT Service Desk in Central Classrooms.

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