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Cyber Security & You Part 2: Dealing with Passwords

written by Priscila BernardesOct 24, 2017, 10:30:00 AM

Topics: IT security

If you are reading this post in isolation, hello!

As you may have guessed, this post is part of a three part series, and you have caught us on Part 2! In this series we discuss the three core components we can all implement to keep our personal data safe, in an online world.

[In case you want to catch up first, you can read Part 1: Keeping safe on Social Media here] 

 

Let's get into the topic du jour: Passwords

 

These days we have more accounts than we even remember, so how on earth are we supposed to keep memorable, safe passwords for all of them?

Well, the times have changed with what is deemed to be a safe password. Cyber criminals are now able to run programs that guess passwords based on popular rules of thumb: capitalizing letters, mixing letters for numbers, and adding punctuation marks etc.

So, how do we now create a super-duper safe password, that's not impossible to remember?

 

1. Use a phrase

Like we eluded to above, the prescription to creating a safe password has changed. Phrases are not only significantly harder to hack, but they are also easier to remember.

Think: 'whyisitnotfridayyet', or whatever other phrase works for you!

 

2. Don't use your personal info to create your password

As we discussed in Part 1, cyber criminals gather personal information about you from various social platforms, and from this they can also try guess your passwords!

With the rise of social media, we have more information about us online than ever before, and it can be used against us if we are not cautious. How many of us use our cute pup's name as our password? What about our birthday?

All this info is very easy to find, so if you love sharing photo's of Mr. Fluffy on Facebook, don't use his name as a password!

 How to create a strong password infographic.png

3. Don't use the same password for all of your logins

This is a tide and true rule, but how many of us ignore it?

Please don't. The reason being is that if a hacker is able to figure out one password, they are able to get in to all of the accounts that share that same password. Think of the damage that could occur...

That's where using a phrase helps! Phrases tend to be a lot easier to remember, so now there's no excuse to be a password repeater.

 

4. Keep them locked away in a safe place

If you're a bit of a forget me not, there's still hope! With all these awesome tools that are on the market, they have developed password manager tools.

These are secure tools where you can keep a tabs of all your passwords, so you only have to remember the one you need to log into the tool. Easy huh?

Tip: We trust LastPass with ours.

The trick with these is to not share this password with anyone. Not even Mr Fluffy.

 

Passwords are the gateway to systems. If you are not taking them in consideration, you could be opening the doors to all nasty security attacks that we all are exposed to. Take action today! Start by changing your passwords to phrases, and follow by storing them in a place other than your old Excel spreadsheet. The cost of inaction is too high not to.

 

How Lancom can help:

The world of security can be daunting. Sometimes doing too much means your people won't be productive. Doing too little could compromise your business. We help businesses meet in the middle. If you are interested in understanding more, let's catch-up!

 

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About Priscila Bernardes

Passionate about relationship building, Priscila leads Lancom’s customer experience and growth initiatives. With an Executive MBA and a decade of IT experience, Priscila loves challenging the status quo and finding innovative ways to service our clients, while sharing what she is learning with the community.