Whats your password?

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Are you doing your passwords wrong?

How to make your passwords uncrackable!

We been warning our clients, friends, and relatives for years about their shoddy password practices. Either they use easily-hacked passwords and/or forget the passwords they’ve created (which results in many password resets).

So we thought since today is Password Day (yes, apparently May 7th is Password Day) that we would do a brief blog on passwords. Look at this statement from McAfee’s Robert Siciliano: “74% of Internet users use the same password across multiple websites, so if a hacker gets your password, they now have access to all your accounts. Reusing passwords for email, banking, and social media accounts can lead to identity theft and financial loss.”

How do we fix this? Well it’s easier than you might think. For starters, head to Intel’s Password Grader to see just how easily cracked your current password is. (The site promises not to retain any information, though still recommends that you not use your actual password–so maybe just use somethings similar.)

If you continue to scroll down you will see a simple step-by-step process for making your “weak and hackable” password “strong and uncrackable.” (There’s a longer and more informative version of this infographic on Sicilian’s blog–and it doesn’t require you to use the Password Grader if you’d prefer not to.)

The thing to takeaway here is to avoid the usual mix of letters, numbers, and punctuation that we are often advised to use, and instead opt for an easier-to-remember pass-word-phrase.

As an example, if your password is something like “P4ssW0rd,” you’d actually be better off with “This is my password!” (just an example). Sounds crazy, but as McAfee and Intel show, it’s not really about complexity, it’s about length. So you can employ simple phrases that are easy to remember and at the same time unhackable.

And you could adapt a similar pass-word-phrase for all the other sites you like to visit: “I Enjoy Looking At Pinterrest!”, for example, and so on. This way you have both diversity and simplicity on your side. Now be aware there are some sites won’t allow you to use spaces, and others that may limit password length. The work around would be to remove the spaces for the one, and limit the length of the other.

So put this simple and practical idea to use, and hopefully you will never get hacked!


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