Passwords. Got to have them. We often go for an easy-to-remember word or name and use it to gain entry into all of our online sites from email to our banking account. That is what online thieves are counting on. If they can figure out that one word, badda-bing badda-boom, they have all our online information and treasures. Protect yourself by using these 8 ways to keep your online passwords safe from trolling predators who are looking for an easy online score.
More Than Words
Hacking programs can go through every word in the dictionary in a matter of minutes, so if your passwords are common words it’s just a matter of time before your accounts are hacked. Incorporate numbers and other symbols into your passwords to keep your accounts safe.
Think of a Phrase
The most secure passwords have at least 12 characters and are a mix of letters, numbers and symbols. Use a short phrase that’s easy for you to remember, then misspell a couple words and toss in a few numbers and symbols for safety sake. For example, iLUVmy*dogz*4evr will be much harder for a hacker to decipher than ilovemydogsforever.
The most common letters in passwords are A, E, O and R and the number usually used is 1. Be unusual and use a W, U, V and 9, 8 or 7, but keep the letter and numbers out of sequence.
When deciding upon a new password, check it’s security rating before implementing it. Microsoft offers an online password checker so you can see just how secure your new password is.
Don’t use the same password for everything. Each account needs its own password so if one account is hacked into, your other ones will still be safe.
Forget About It
Don’t bother remembering passwords for seldom-used websites. It is easier and more secure to reset your password with each visit on sites that you may only enter once a month or less.
When a website offers (some now require) double authenticity before a password can be changed or before you can log into the account from a different computer, sign up for it. A code number will to be sent to your cell phone before being able to log in.
Pick security questions that have hard answers to help keep your passwords safe. Finding out your mother’s maiden name is as easy as logging into Facebook. Where you were born and your pet’s name is just that easy to discover also. Unusual questions with answers that are hard for hackers to find will help keep your online passwords safe.