It was always a popular TV game show and board game.

Now, password is an ever-changing game of trying to log onto a computer system, using the right combinations of numbers and letters.

The problem is remembering them and creating them. And as soon as you settle into the recall routine, it's time to change them again.

Instead of fond memories of Betty White and husband Allen Ludden, password these days is more likely to make you recall one of those seven words you couldn't say on TV.

Not that White shied away from using one or two. She told us her favorite curse word during an interview on “Access Hollywood.”

Google it, if you can remember your password.

Pass the word

Seriously, passwords are necessary evils.

They are supposed to protect our privacy and keep important information secure. Without them, we are at the mercy of the unscrupulous.

The rub is that there are so many, and you are not supposed to write them down.

Nowadays, a password is required for almost everything we do.

Let's see, you need one, two or three to log onto your office computer; another to check your voice mail, fill out a timecard (I try not to forget this one); Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts and to check on pay stubs. And that's just at work.

Then there is your bank account, ATMs, cellphone and home voice mail, investment accounts (although it's best not to look now with the market's freefall of late.) That doesn't count bills you pay online.

Watched TV lately? Try getting OnDemand TV without a code. Even the remote needs one. (Don't worry, your hubby or significant other will make sure that works. Sorry guys. )

We all know passwords are important. But for some who can't remember the titles or main characters of recently read books, we are expected to remember 10 to 15 passwords? (What was the name of the bow and arrow girl? And you should “Think Like A Woman and Act Like ...”?)

How many numbers?

If you think remembering passwords is frustrating, try coming up with them. Should they consist of two numbers and six letters or six numbers and two letters? And which letters should be all caps?

Birthdays should be banned. Even amateur hackers start with those.

As for using the word password as your password, not clever. According to Internet security firm SplashData, it tops the 2011 list of the worst 25 passwords. Thousands use it. No. 2 on the list is 123456, followed by 12345678. No. 9 — trustno1.

Ok, Google the rest.

By the way, you do need a password to log onto to read the morning news and this column, of course. Well, some passwords are OK.

A co-worker said she has so many, she wrote them all down. Yeah, she knows it defeats the purpose.

We all know passwords are here to stay, so we vent and learn to live with them.

As for the game show, is it still on TV? I guess I'll try to sign in on Netflix and find out.

Reach City Editor Shirley A. Greene at 937-5555 or