We use passwords for almost everything in today’s digital world, from accessing our social media accounts to logging into our financial accounts. But did you know that a strong password can help protect your personal information from hackers?
A strong password is a difficult-to-guess combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. This article will teach you how to create a secure password for your online accounts.
What is Password Management?
Passwords are collections of sequences provided by users as a response to authentication prompts for web accounts. Although passwords are still one of the most secure authentication methods, they are prone to security risks when misused.
This is where the role of password management comes in. Password management is a set of principles and best practices that users must follow to effectively preserve and manage passwords to prevent unauthorized access.
What Makes a Password Secure?
Cybercriminals know that most users create easily memorable passwords and often reuse the same password across multiple accounts. This means that hacking into one account gives them quick access to the rest.
A secure password is one that cannot be guessed or broken using brute force. Hackers use computers to try many letter, number, and symbol combinations in search of the correct password, but modern computers can quickly crack short passwords that consist only of letters and numbers.
How to Create a Strong Password to Safeguard Your Account
Read more about the following best practices for strong passwords. Remember, better be safe than sorry.
Tip 1 – Never use confidential information as a password.
Avoid using anything personal, such as your name, date of birth, or pet’s name, as a password. This information is easily obtainable by viewing your social media, finding your online work profile, or overhearing a conversation.
This is especially concerning for frequent social media users, as much of their personal information is readily available online. Cybercriminals can quickly generate a list of possible passwords and use software to run through the combinations.
Tip 2 – Use at least eight different letters, numerals, and symbols.
Avoid using the names of loved ones, pets, and favourite movies as passwords, as this makes it easier for cybercriminals to gain access to your accounts. In fact, the more diverse your password is, the more difficult it is to predict.
For example, KHl#aQ9cz? is a unique combination of capital and lowercase letters, numerals, and symbols.
Tip 3 – Use Long Passwords
The majority of services require a minimum eight-character password. In reality, more characters are required for a highly secure password.
The standard of eight-character passwords is now obsolete. As with everything else in the realm of technology, password-cracking software has gotten faster, and some now have the ability to make billions of guesses per second, which allows them to break an eight-character password in seconds.
Experts now recommend that passwords contain at least 13 to 20 characters for user security.
In other words, the longer the password, the more difficult and time-consuming it is for cybercriminals to decrypt it.
Tip 4 – Do not use dictionary terms or identities.
Dictionary attacks are similar to brute force attacks, but instead of bombarding the target with random strings of characters, the attacker generates passwords from a predefined list of words. If your password is a single word, you are vulnerable to a dictionary attack.
Tip 5 – Avoid commonly used passwords.
A strong password must be extremely difficult for others to predict or decipher, so avoid passwords like “mypassword” or “abcde.” Although these may not be the most common passwords in the world, they are still among the least effective.
Tip 6 – Avoid Reusing Your Credentials
Once you have created a secure password, it may be tempting to use it for all of your online accounts. However, this increases your vulnerability to multiple attacks.
Every device, application, website, and software requires a password or PIN that is both unique and strong. If a cybercriminal is able to guess one of your passwords, they will likely try to access all of your accounts, both personal and professional.
Tip 7 – Never Share Your Credentials
Do not share your login information with anyone, including your coworkers, IT or support team, customer service or help desk staff, family, or acquaintances.
Additionally, be wary of fraudulent emails, text messages (smishing), and voice calls (vishing) that request your password. Do not provide any personal information, including your password, date of birth, address, or credit card information, in response to these requests.
Tip 8 – Use a Password Generator
If you do not have the time to create a strong password on your own, a password generator can provide you with a unique and secure password quickly and easily.
Our own password generator will generate a random string of characters for you to use as a password for your device, email, social media accounts, and anything else that requires secure access.
Tip 9 – Use a Reliable Password Manager
It is recommended that you use a trustworthy password manager, whether you generate your own strong passwords or use an online service to do so.
A secure password manager generates, stores, and manages all of your passwords from a single, protected online account, allowing you to use an unlimited number of unique passwords without having to remember them.
Some of the best password managers are Google Chrome’s password manager and Microsoft’s 1Password.
Password Management Challenges
In today’s digital world, securing login information presents many challenges. As the number of web services used by individuals continues to increase, so does the number of cyber crimes. Some common password security risks include:
- Login spoofing, where cybercriminals collect passwords through fake login pages.
- Stealing passwords through unauthorized network access and tools such as keyloggers in a sniffing attack.
- Shoulder surfing, where credentials are stolen as they are typed, sometimes using a microcamera.
- Brute force attacks, where access to user data is gained by stealing passwords through automated tools.
- Theft of registration credentials and other confidential information directly from a website’s database.
To create a robust password, consider using an extended passphrase that combines uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Avoid using common passwords and personal information, such as your name or date of birth.
Using a secure password manager to generate your passwords is also recommended. Remember to keep your password secure and change it regularly to stay protected against cyberattacks. Stay vigilant online!
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