Written by Rachael Dallas, Product Sales Manager of VASCO at Wick Hill.
Your static passwords are like an Easter egg hunt for hackers. They will find them and it won’t take any longer than a 5 year old on a mission for some chocolate!
Like a mother provides clues for children on the hunt, you provide clues for hackers all over your social media. Those quiz’s you do on Facebook to work out your superhero name…. think about the information you’re supplying to your hundreds of ‘friends’. Obviously it’s not a real friendship unless it’s ‘Facebook Official’ but how much do you trust Bob who you met once on a lad’s holiday in Magaluf? Although it was the best night of your life (for the millionth time in your life), you have just told him your date of birth, favorite colour, first pets name or some other throw away information which is a crucial element to most people’s passwords.
It’s time we started learning how to be password Savvy….
- Do you use the same password over multiple websites?
- Do you write your passwords down because it’s so hard to remember them all?
- Do you use personal information to construct a password?
- Has your password been the same for over 6 months?
If you answered yes to the above questions then we have some serious work to do!
NEVER use the same password over multiple websites. If a hacker works out one password your whole world is open to them.
NEVER write your passwords down. You are telling that child exactly where to find the eggs and there is no fun in that.
NEVER use personal information in your passwords. Like I said you tell people that information everyday on social media. Construct a ‘strong password’ you can remember.
NEVER keep your password the same for longer than 6 months. Passwords are often stolen without you even knowing however will not be used right away. Strong passwords also take some time to crack so if you change regularly you might change it before they get a chance to use or crack the existing.
Now let’s cover how to create a strong password because as we have just learnt pinkrex87 is just not going to cut the mustard anymore!
- Choose a password which is around 12 characters. There is no agreed length a password should be but the longer the better and the longer it takes to crack.
- Don’t use obvious dictionary words or combinations of words. For example ‘chocolate’ is extremely easy and ‘chocolatebunny’ isn’t much harder to crack.
- Use a mix of different types of characters, numbers, symbols, uppercase and lower case.
- Don’t use obvious substitutions. ‘ch0c0late’ isn’t any stronger because you replaced the o with a 0, it’s too obvious.
Following the above rules reduces your risk of being hacked but it won’t stop them forever. Hacker technology is getting better every day and it’s up to you to keep up to date with the latest techniques. Naughty children don’t get chocolate so don’t make it easy for the hackers to find it.
If you want something the hackers can’t beat, 2 factor authentication with VASCO is the way forward. They have never been hacked!
For more information give me a call – 01483 227735
For more information on VASCO, visit our website.
For further reading on VASCO,