Secure lock password

How many passwords do you have? We all know that our passwords need to be strong to prevent our accounts being hacked, but it’s important to also understand the importance of having different passwords for different services.

Unfortunately, having different passwords often leads to confusion and an over-reliance on password managers to generate and store them. What happens if the software fails somehow? Are our passwords lost forever?

So, what’s the solution? The secret is to create strong, secure passwords that are easy to remember. In this post, we’re going to look at a few simple tips for doing just that.

The dos and don’ts of a strong password

Let’s start with the basics:

Do

  • Consider a longer password. The longer it is, the harder it is to break
  • Ensure your password is at least 8 characters long. 12 is better
  • Include a mix of capital letters, numbers, punctuation and numbers
  • Change your passwords frequently
  • Include upper and lower case letters

Don’t

  • Use the same password for all your accounts
  • Use information that’s easy to guess. For example, your birth date, mother’s maiden name, pet’s name
  • Use names or places as your password
  • Use words contained in the dictionary – this makes it easier for crackers to hack your account

Tips for remembering your password

Do you struggle to remember your passwords? It’s getting harder and harder to remember passwords for all our accounts. With work accounts, Cloud storage, personal email and countless social media channels, the brain power required to remember them all is far beyond the ability of most people.

Here are a few techniques for creating memorable, strong passwords:

Forget what you know: It’s possible that you’re holding onto the old-fashioned rules of password creation. You may be using your birthplace, date of birth or even your first pet’s home as your password.

Mix words: Take two memorable words and mix them together. For example, silly puppy would become spiulplpyy. Add a special character or number to up the security factor.

Use motor patterns: This is a great hack for creating strong passwords, and one that many of us already use when remembering pin numbers and phone numbers. Instead of remembering specific letters and numbers, you remember the pattern they make on a keyboard. It’s an excellent visual trick. You’ll find full details over at lifehack.org.

Check your password

How secure is your password? Check how secure it is using HowSecureIsMyPassword. It will tell you how strong it is, give you tips on how to improve it, and (fascinatingly) show you how long it would take a hacker to crack it.

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