Coming up with a new password is painful, isn’t it? We tend to not make them unique enough so that we can remember them.
The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) sent out an alert that listed the top 25 common passwords. You can count on the hackers using these passwords and more to steal information. Here are the top 10 passwords: password, 123456, 12345678, qwerty, abc123, monkey, 1234567, letmein, trustno1 and dragon.
My guess is that you aren’t using these passwords. But, are your passwords safe enough? Hitachi ID Systems, Inc. has a good User Guide at http://hitachi-id.com/password-manager/docs/choosing-good-passwords.html. Here are some of their password safety tips:
- Base the password on a mnemonic, such as an easily remembered phrase. Take the first letter of each word in the phrase and add a few characters. Example: “Seek first to understand” would look like sftu8@.
- Let applications like Hitachi ID Password Manager select a safe password for you.
- Choose a password when your mind is clear, and you are not rushed to create the new password. Then use the password often.
- Use six characters or more.
- Mix upper and lower case letters. Don’t use personal information or dictionary words. Hackers use software to enter random dictionary words to help them determine your password. It works.
- Avoid substitutions such as replacing l or i with the digit 1. The hackers’ software will figure that out immediately.
If you are like me, you have a hard time remembering what password goes to what account. The User Guide says, if this is a problem for you (and I can’t imagine it not being a problem), don’t write down passwords but rather use one strong password for all your login accounts. They say this is more secure than writing the password on a post-it note or entering it where it might be seen, such as in your phone --- and then you lose the phone.
How are you managing your passwords? Love to hear from you.