Are Your Passwords Safe?
I know, I know—you’ve heard it many times before. You should use safe passwords. Apparently, however, most of us don’t listen very well. Despite the numerous warnings, there are still people out there who will use an easy-to-remember password like “12345” – the one on top of the list of those most easily guessed by hackers. Not only that, but many of those people will also apply the same password on many accounts, like “facebook12345” or “twitter12345”. Remember that these passwords that are easy for you to remember are also easy for hackers to identify—which puts you in great jeopardy.
In an article for Digital Trends titled Six Tips to Bombproof Your Password, Geoff Duncan suggests that you follow these important guidelines when choosing passwords:
1. Use a minimum of 15 characters. Using 20 is even better. When in doubt, think big.
2. Use combined terms. Using 3-5 unrelated words together can be the basis for a great password—like “ScarletBananalFlowerBirthday” and requires remembering only four words.
3. Use groups of symbols and numbers. If the system won’t allow the use of just words, then this is the way to go. You may consider using the words as above, but insert symbols and numbers between the words, such as “ScarletBananaFlower6*^Birthday”.
4. Avoid 1337 speak. This means don’t use common symbol substitutions like@ for a, 3 for E, 5 for S.
5. Use a password management service. They can generate random passwords of any length, remember all your passwords and log you into sites and services with a master password or PIN code.
6. Never reuse passwords. If hackers crack your password on one service, they will immediately try the password with your name or email address.
And speaking of password safety, remember that passwords in your business may be set to expire in a certain period of time. You may set this up for yourself, or you may call us for help in doing this scheduling for you. Many of our customers ask us to do this for them.
You may want to consider using a Password Keeper Program like Keepass. They will generate passwords for you according to the rules above, save them, manage them, and even do automatic logins for you. These programs are normally offered for your servers, desktops, tablets, and smartphones.
The number to call is 800/425-672-4806 or you may email us for more information.