Passwords shield us on the front line from cyber criminals, which is why creating a locked gate password should be put at the top of your priority list. In the past, eight characters safe-guarded your password from malicious hackers, but today, password-cracking programs have advanced enough to make 350 billion guesses per second!
Hackers can crack eight character passwords in a matter of seconds. Instead, experts recommend 13 to 20 character passwords for optimal protection and to avoid common phrases, words or names found in the dictionary. In other words, keep it random.
How do you choose your password? How can you remember it? Read on for more tips on how to make a good password and protect your data.
1. Random is the Key
To help people stay secure online and keep their data secure, security experts recommend that people and small businesses #ThinkRandom to create strong passwords.
More people now store valuable data – both personal and business – on devices like a smartphone, tablet or computer. At the same time, cybercrime is a growing national issue, as according to figures an estimated 2 million cybercrime offences were committed last year. If a hacker gains access to your device they could cause a lot of damage – for example, they can access sensitive data such as your email or bank details. If you own a business, your devices are full of your clients’ data. Your business and its reputation are at risk if this information is compromised.
To help you keep your data secure, Rethink Tech recommends you create strong passwords by using three random words. Combining three words which mean something to you but are random to others will create a password that is strong and memorable. Use separate passwords for your business and home account as well to further decrease the chances of multiple security breaches.
Capitalize the beginning and end of words, and add the money symbol between the two words to separates them and provide an extra random character to crack. We also recommend words with Q, X or Z in them, as these are the least commonly used letters in the English language.
Another easy way to remember passwords is a trick world champion memory star Alex Mullen, the first American memory champion, used. You encode the needed information into a personal story that you will remember for later. This is important because how to make a good password also involves pulling it out of your memory more easily.
These personalized passwords should be much easier to remember because you didn't just come up with a string of random numbers, letters and symbols. If you fail to remember the password this way, you haven't made it meaningful enough to you. Try it for yourself and see!
2. Check the Security of Your Password
Creating a strong password also involves checking to make sure it's secure. With HowSecureisMyPassword, you will be given an estimate for how long it takes a hacker to crack your password. Meanwhile, PasswordMeter gives you a rating, and you'll be given suggestions on how to improve your password based on their findings.
3. Mix Up the Words of your Password
Scramble the words of your password for added security. For example, take the first letter of each word and keep mixing them together. The first word will be uppercase and the second word will be lowercase. Let's say you want to take the words "Hairy Monster." You would type it as "HmAoInRsY$%TeR."
Monster is a longer word, and once you finish the word hairy, you can add two more symbols to create further password confusion for hacking software.
Lastly, avoid using the same password on multiple accounts as this can have a domino effect when hackers breach one of your passwords.
If you have questions about how to secure your personal information and data, contact Rethink Tech or submit a help request today!