Although we’ve been on the Internet for over 30 years, some of us still haven’t learnt their lesson about passwords. As pointed out in a previous article, a recent study shows that the most common passwords are “password” and “123456” – Easy to remember passwords which are also a walk in the park to hack. Here are 7 tips on how to avoid falling into the weak password habit.
- Make your password long – A long password is a more difficult one. Usually hackers use automatic algorithms which create hundreds of combinations in hope that they re-create your password. If you have a long password, this might take alot of time, and hackers turn their eyes on a weaker, less consuming one. On the other hand, if your password is a weak short one, it might take as little as 3 seconds to hack.
- Make your password a nonsense phrase – “iliveinmalta” is surely an easy password to remember but a very vulnerable one because its easily guessable. Creating words or phrases with words which are not found in the dictionary, makes it even harder to crack.
- Include numbers, symbols and uppercase letters – Most of the accounts online, require this as a standard but it is important to remember that even if not, you should have a password which includes this mixed combination.
- Avoid using obvious information – Using facts about you as passwords makes it easy for people to guess your password. Avoid using names, family names, pets or school names.
- Do not reuse passwords – If your account is compromised and you use this email address and password combination across multiple sites, your information can be easily used to get into any of these other accounts. Use unique passwords for everything.
- A password is a divine secret – Don’t give your passwords to anyone else. Don’t type your password into your device if you are within plain sight of other people. And do not plaster your password on a sticky note on your work computer.
- Change your passwords regularly – The more sensitive your information is, the more often you should change your password. Once it is changed, do not use that password again for a very long time.