Password protecting a data file... how to cope with forgotten password?

Tereza Snyder tereza at
Tue Jun 12 12:02:29 EDT 2012

On Jun 12, 2012, at 10:44 AM, Dr. Hawkins wrote:

> On Tue, Jun 12, 2012 at 8:41 AM, Tereza Snyder <tereza at> wrote:
>> The application I’m working on needs to store possibly confidential client info on the user’s hard drive. It's asking for an optional password. (The password is optional because it’s up to the user whether they want the extra protection). If they DO input a password, and subsequently forget it, how can I provide a non-internet-based mechanism for retrieving or resetting the password?
> First, be certain that you even *want* such a possibility.  How secure
> do you need?  Making it possible for the user to recover means that a
> way to recover without the password exists . . .

Good point.

I’m close to deciding that because the data in question is stored within the current user's account, that should be enough.  It’ll be survey results pertaining to disability, which is not not likely to be high-stakes data, but the data won’t be anonymous either. However, I expect my client to demand a password option, so I have to puzzle it out.


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