Managing countless passwords for multiple accounts across the internet can feel exhausting.  In an attempt to keep things simple, many people rely on passwords that are simple and easy to remember – but also easy for a hacker to crack.  SplashData released some of the worst passwords, compiled from a list posted by hackers online.  Some of the worst include, “password”, “123456”, “qwerty”, “11111”, “baseball”, “jesus”, and “iloveyou”.  The trick is to find the balance between easy to remember and hard to guess.  While it may take some extra effort, it is worth it to know your information is secure.

Want to decrease the chances of getting hacked?  Here are tips to create safe passwords:

  • Go for length and complexity. Use upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.  Don’t use simple combinations like “123” or “abc”.  A good rule of thumb is 6 to 8 characters, but the longer the better!
  • Avoid using personal information. Don’t use your birthdate, nickname, children or pets’ names, address, etc.
  • Use different passwords for different websites/accounts. Avoid the temptation to use the same password for multiple accounts, especially for bank accounts and other important accounts.
  • Change your passwords often. You don’t know where you online information could be stored.  Don’t re-use old passwords.
  • Consider using a password manager service. These programs generate complex passwords across multiple sites, and then manage these passwords with a single master password.
  • Use a sentence, catchphrase, or quote and abbreviate to make it harder to crack. An example would be taking “take me out to the ball game” and turning it into “tmo2tbg”.
  • Keep your passwords secure. Don’t save them in a email account that can get hacked or in a Word document that isn’t encrypted.  If you write the passwords down, be very careful where you store this information.  Don’t send passwords through email.
  • Don’t share your password. Be wary of anyone asking for your password, either online or in person.  Be cautious and don’t release your password to just anyone.
    • Be creative. Use multiple strategies and techniques to create a hacker-proof password.  Example: Take a phrase you can remember, like “My favorite movie is ‘Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom’” and change spellings, add other characters, and vary upper and lower-case: “**!Myfav’MovieisIndianaJonez2!**”


John Bradley Jackson

Top Dog

The BirdDog Group

© Copyright 2013

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