Some years ago a sysadmin of large computing centre (on a campus) enforced the password of every single user to contain the character
$ at an arbitrary position. They soon dropped this policy but I always wondered what could possibly be gained by this. Would this actually make passwords more secure or would it make them weaker?
Letting aside the human factor this would have on the memorability of passwords, my assumption was that this would have no effect on how it is to break a password since it is known that one of the characters is
$. However, given that the position of the character and the length of the password were arbitrary, maybe there is more to it.
Can you shed some light on the effects of this policy and why anybody would enforce it?