What are Passwords?
Passwords are a common form of authentication and are often the only barrier between a hacker and your personal information. There are several software applications attackers utilize to help guess or "crack" passwords, but by choosing strong passwords and keeping them confidential, you can make it more difficult for an unauthorized person to access your personal information.
How do you Choose Strong Passwords?
Most use passwords based on personal information so that they are easy to remember. However, this common practice makes the passwords vulnerable for an attacker to "crack".
Is your password a combination of the month, day, or year of your birthday or is it the last four digits of your social security number, address, or phone number? Think about how easy it is for an identity thief to obtain this information!!!
Is your password one that can be found in the dictionary? If so, it may be susceptible to "dictionary" attacks – software used to crack passwords based on words in the dictionary.
Never use the same password for every website, ecommerce site, system, or program you log into. If an attacker guesses your password, he will have access to all of your confidential, financial, and personal information. Always use different usernames and passwords for each login account.
Suggestions for Strong Passwords
- Don't use passwords that are based on personal information.
- Don't use words that can be found in any dictionary of any language.
- Use different passwords on every login account.
- Use both lowercase and capital letters.
- Use a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters.
- Use Password Safe Pro's free Password Generator. Click Here
Suggestions for Protecting Your Passwords
- Don't write passwords down and leave them where they can be found.
- Don't leave passwords on your desk or tape it your computer or keyboard.
- Don't give attackers password information through phone calls or email.
- Don't store passwords in text files.
- Don't store passwords in spreadsheets.
- Don't store passwords in unencrypted databases.
- Never allow email clients or web-browsers to "Remember" your passwords.
- Never share your passwords with anyone.
There's no guarantee that these techniques will prevent an attacker from "cracking" your password, but it will be more difficult.