Posted by : Deepak Vasudevan Monday, January 19, 2009

Hit 'ESC' before entering your credentials into Website Username/Password Screens

With these days, websites designing multiple small pieces of information gathering in a single website, it is always a safer way to first HIT escape to instruct the web browser to stop loading any of the information, trigger onLoad script and then to manually focus on the username/password dialog to enter the credentials. The reason being, if we directly focus on the username field and type the username. By the time we tab to password field and start typing the password, if the page (automatic) load completes, there might be a script which would cause a setFocus to another search textbox. If that is the case, the password might start appearing on that textbox.

I have observed the following crazy behavior with a few websites:

  1. Inbox.com The cursor auto-focusses on the search and it would start autosuggesting the moment it gets the keystrokes.
  2. Yahoo.com There are very many times when Yahoo login page shows a distorted screen and then automatically resizes itself bringing the DIV up. When this happens the following breaks happen:
    1. The credentials box are reset. [No Problem]
    2. The password half appears on the login field.
Intelligent Google Accounts At least with respect to Google Accounts login (be it Blogger/Google Mail/Orkut), you can observe a different smart and secure behavior. The username first appears half and half of the username appears in the password field. I admit that this is going to result in failed login but at least the password never can attempt to sneak in to the username field but only the reverse:)

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