So May the 4th is not only Star Wars Day, but also World Password Day! What a day to be alive.
At Dove Computers we love a password, a password is what separates you from the sleazy scam artists lurking in the dark side of the internet in a new hope for a new victim.
But some passwords aren’t as secure as you may think… yes, Mr Clever ‘password123’, we’re talking to you.
Here are our top tips on how to create and keep a secure password. Consider this our return of the Jedi moment against the hackers.
1. Make a Secure Password
A secure password must contain at least eight letters – capital and lower case – at least one number and, if the site allows, a symbol (not all sites allow this).
If you can place a capital half way through the password, even better! Grammatical rules dictate that if a password were to have a capital letter, it would be at the beginning, so a password with a capital letter part way through will really take away from a hacker’s force.
Your password should be memorable, but not obvious and try to make different passwords for different accounts. Consider it this way, if one password is compromised, every account is lost.
2. Update your passwordsEven if it’s as simple as adding an extra number or changing the placing of the capital letter; passwords need updating.
An email account with the same password since the millennium (falcon) won’t be as secure as one changed last week.
Many email and online providers now prompt password updates as it helps to keep your account secure. If you’re likely to forget you can set these reminders for every month, 6 months, week… whatever you feel you need.
If ever you feel your email account could have been hacked or masked – change your password.
It’s remarkable how much difference changing your password can solve.
3. Don't Share Your Password with Just Anyone
It sounds silly, I know. It’s the kind of thing we tell our little ewoks (kids) not to do. But it still happens.
Unless you’re aware of who you’re sharing your password with – for instance in person to a computer repair company, or with a family member that you would allow access to your personal information.
But anyone online asking for your password, anyone over email, don’t. There’s nothing to say that’s secure or that they’re even who they say they are. If this happens you’re best ringing the company directly to tell them. You may be told what a feisty one you are, but at least then you know you’re speaking to the right people.
4. Consider a Password Generator
There are so many programs nowadays that can generate a safe and secure password for you. These programs often give out a password of numbers and letters that equates to no memorable word, but they’re definitely safe.
Most of the time these programs will store your details for you to access privately… so make sure you remember the password for that if you choose to do this.
It sounds easy, it sounds simple and that’s because it is. There’s no fear of a phantom menace if you’ve given yourself a proper, up to date, secure password… I assure you.
Take the plunge, update your passwords today!