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How a Single Username Puts Your Security at Risk

Tom's Guide, By Sue Marquette Poremba


In the theme song for the old television sitcom "Cheers," the Boston bar was the place where "everybody knows your name." To prove it, every time the character Norm walked into the establishment, everyone inside shouted out, "Norm!"


But the Internet isn't "Cheers." On the Internet, it's not always advisable to let everyone know your real name.


Instead, many Internet users create usernames that incorporate details unique to themselves, even if those details are only initials followed by a three-digit number.

While it may not be a person's official legal name, a username makes an individual user recognizable within online communities. A username can be just as much a part of a person's identity as the name on his or her birth certificate. Read more.