Lesson Study with Teaching Password Cracking Calculator

I had a much better lesson this week on teaching my students about how password security works, and how to calculate how secure a password is, using Microsoft Excel.  I would like to post more about this soon, but before the details in my memory fade more, this is the basic process I went through, that worked:

  1. Discussion first about how would they hack a password
  2. Go through lower case letter example first
  3. Give pre-filled out handout of Excel
  4. Use partly filled in saved copy to speed up data entry
  5. Have teams come up with a password in the end, and test security with calculator
  6. Possibly next time, we should have a contest within the groups

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