How to Answer Online Security Questions - dummies

By Ryan C. Williams

Security questions have been around since before the Internet. Think of the cliché from war movies where a couple of GIs ask an approaching solider who won the World Series last year. On the Internet, these questions get a lot more personal, but the purpose is the same: to identify who you are in case a provider needs more verification (to reset a password, perhaps).

These security questions can range from your mother’s maiden name to your favorite sports team or color. When you first create an account, you’ll provide answers to the security questions, and the provider will ask for the answers when necessary.

If the answers match, you’re good. If not, you don’t get access. Therefore, these questions tend to be rather precise (what was the name of your first pet?) rather than nebulous (how do you feel today?).

That said, you don’t have to answer correctly! You just have to tell the service what you told it was the right answer the first time. You can give it a wrong answer when you set the question and remember to give it the wrong answer every time. For example, tell the service that your favorite team is the Cleveland Browns. Nobody ever guesses that.