How Strong is Your Password?
(Currently Available on PC and Laptop Version Only)
Avoid the most common password mistakes to protect your corporate and personal information
For most of us, the use of internet-based services is a huge part of our everyday lives. We work, We bank. We shop. We stream. What’s the one thing all of these services have in common? Passwords. They all demand passwords.
Coming up with new and unique passwords — and then trying to remember them all — can certainly be frustrating. You might be tempted just to use the same password for everything, but that’s mistake number one. As with any good investment portfolio, diversification is key. And as the hackers get smarter, so must you. As reported, there was a massive leak of email / password pairs on the dark web. The email / password pairs came from some big sites including Gmail, Facebook, Amazon, and many others.
Chances are you could be affected. Here are some tips to help strengthen your password security.
1. Avoid the most common and obvious passwords.
Do we really have to tell you not to use the word password as your password or 12345678?
2. Avoid the most common substitutions.
Changing password to p@ssword or passw0rd isn’t going to fool today’s cybercriminal. We don’t recommend using any common word with just a single number or symbol substitution.
3. Don’t use common paths on your keyboard.
We’ve already covered passwords like 1235678 and qwerty, but using other keyboard paths really isn’t any better, even if they look more complex. Check out 1qazxsw2 on your keyboard. It may look more complex and random, but it’s still an identifiable path. There are actually password dictionaries on the dark web that list out these common paths, which means a cybercriminal will always try them first.
4. Avoid using the same password for multiple services, especially banking and credit cards.
As we said above, you’ve got to diversify so that if someone gets one of your passwords, it doesn’t compromise all the rest. Don’t forget about linked accounts, either. If you’ve used your Google or Facebook credentials to sign in to other services, then all of them will be vulnerable should a single one get hacked.
5. Longer is better.
We’ve told you several things not to do. Now let’s talk about some things you should do. Longer passwords will be tougher to crack, especially if you mix upper- and lowercase letters and add in some numbers and symbols. Even if you just use a bunch of random words linked together — like PoloHorseFlagCanada — it for a more challenging password.
The bottom line is this: password security is critical, and you cannot afford to be lazy when creating passwords. A little extra effort up front can prevent a lot of headaches down the road.