Easy And Effective Password Tips You Should Always Keep In Mind
If one of your passwords happens to be the word password, password1, 1234567, 7654321, abc123, or iloveyou then you can congratulate yourself for being on the list of having the worst passwords. The Worst Passwords List is an annual list of the most common passwords used; which would mean to steer clear from the 25 words the list comes out with each year. To give you an idea of just how bad it can get, a password like 123456 takes less than a second to crack.
Some decades back, maybe iloveyou was considered good enough, but the late 90s and early 2000s is ancient history now in terms of cybersecurity. This is especially true of last year, 2020. With most of the world being on lockdown due to the pandemic, the FBI reported a 300% increase in cybercrimes. It is also reported that on average, 30,000 new websites are hacked daily.
Staying safe starts by choosing strong passwords and managing them. So, let’s get into it and give you some effective password tips to help you along the way.
The Longer the Better
This is one of the safest measures you can take, but people just too often make their passwords too short. It’s advised to make your password at least 10 characters long because that would take at least four months to crack it. The longer the password the longer it takes to crack. By using short passwords, you are unwittingly handling all your data to a potential hacker on a silver platter.
Avoid Real Words
Passwords have no grammar rules or follow a certain vocabulary. It can be anything you want. That means you can modify phrases or sentences. Use a mix of letters, numbers, caps and lower case. Choose to capitalize randomly, rather than the first letter of a word. The more random you are, the more difficult it is for someone to get into your password.
Use Different Passwords
Everyone has an email and most of us have more than one. Anyone online usually belongs to one or more social networks. If you have an online business that’s other passwords, or if you use online banking or have a blog, and the list goes on of sites, platforms, and apps.
This adds up to a lot of passwords. While it’s tempting to use one password for everything, that wouldn’t be a wise move. If someone can crack into that one password then you will have compromised the safety of everything else you use the same password for. Use different passwords for different accounts. And don’t forget to change passwords every while.
Since it’s better to use long, modified, and different passwords for your different accounts where passwords need to be changed every so often, it becomes awfully confusing and nearly impossible to memorize all the passwords you accumulate over time. How many times have we clicked “Forgot Password”? Probably more times than we can remember. If you haven’t yet used a password manager tool, it’s never too late to start.
A password manager app allows you to store all your passwords in one app that is opened by only one main password. You only have to remember one main password to open up all your other ones so when choosing a safe manager you want one that has strong features such as: Reminding you to change passwords every so often, tell you if they are too weak, and suggest you use 2-step authentication to open your password.
These features, and more, will simplify your online life, keep it safer, and make it much more difficult for anyone else other than you to get a hold of your passwords. Everyone needs peace of mind to know their data is protected as best can be.
Don’t use Personal Info
Birthdays, addresses, pet names, nicknames and the sorts are often used in passwords and hackers know that. This information can be found on public domains or social media sites, so it’s not that difficult to find out if your birth date is posted somewhere online, for instance, if someone wants to make the effort. So keep your personal information away from your passwords.
There is just no way to go around it; most of us have our lives online, even when we are offline. Even if you want to go off the grid for a while, your information and passwords can’t join you. A strong password should only make sense to you but no one else. Give some thought to creating strong passwords and use available tools out there to manage them and stay as safe as possible.
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