My pa$$w0rd is a good one, right?

Why do I need a good password?

Let’s face it, everything about passwords can be quite annoying, right?  Unfortunately, they are a necessary evil to keep those things we hold dear away from prying eyes.  Any old password just will not suffice though.  You didn’t really think you were the only one that used 123456, did you?  In fact according to Keeper Security “nearly 17% of people are safeguarding their accounts with 123456”.

Ok, so we know we need a more secure password but what does that look like?

  • It should be easy to remember (You don’t want to write it down.)
  • Use at least 8 characters (the longer the more secure)
  • Use a mixture of characters (most are case sensitive)
  • Upper case letters (A – Z)
  • Lower case letters (a – z)
  • One or more numbers
  • At least one or two special characters, such as a $ or * or !

Anything to avoid?  You bet!

  • Names of any kind. These include your login name, your own or a family member’s name, a pet’s name, or any proper name.
  • Any kind of personal information, specifically your phone number, address, birthday, license plate number, or anything else someone could guess or look up about you. Do not include sensitive information such as your ATM PIN, or social security number or credit card number.
  • Words contained in the dictionary or foreign language dictionary. By all means, never, ever use the word password and avoid words that can be found in the dictionary.
  • Sequences or repeated characters. Avoid sequences or repeated characters such as 22222 or 12345 or abc123 or asdfg.

Final thoughts

With identity theft on the rise, hackers looking to drain bank accounts and even protecting children from specific content, the right set of passwords can make all the difference.  Password selection should not be a scary or stressful process but should be taken very seriously.

2016-passwords

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