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May the 4th (& good passwords) Be with You

Are you worried about online security?

Are you concerned you will be hacked and your identity stolen?

Do you use the same password for most everything?

Have you used the same password for the past 10 years?

5/4/2017 is not only the rallying cry to proclaim your love of Star Wars, it is also

#WorldPasswordDay

 

FACT*: 80% of hacking-related breaches leveraged either stolen passwords and/or weak or guessable passwords.

FACT*: Single Factor Authentication is no longer enough.

 

We will start with “NEVER” just because these are so very common and full of trouble, unless you want to be hacked.

  1. Never use your pet’s name, your or your family’s phone numbers, addresses, birthdays, SSN, names in your password
  2. Never use common passwords like “123456″, or “password”, which still rank as the top 2 most commonly used.  See why it is easy to be a hacker?  Also avoid common words and phrases, like “the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog”, even if you use special characters to replace the letters.
  3. Never use the same password for everything – especially at work, for banking and other areas where hacking could lead to loss of important data

Tips on creating Secure Passwords

  1. COMPLEXITY: select a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols for your passwords.
  2. LENGTH: make sure your passwords are at least 8 characters in length. Longer passwords make them much more secure.
  3. MIX IT UP: If you want to use the word “security” you can convert it to “$3cur1tY.” Or if you want to use the phrase “I love to kayak” you can change it to “1luv2kay@K”. Make it even stronger by adding symbols and punctuation: “#1Luv2kay@K!

More ways to protect your password

Now that you have complex passwords, take these easy precautions to further protect them and your accounts.

  • Don’t reuse the same password across multiple websites.
  • Never share your passwords with anyone.
  • Change your passwords frequently; every 3 months is best practice.
  • Set up two-factor authentication whenever available

Businesses should use two-factor authentication (2FA) to add an extra layer of protection, which is also important if you use a password management application.  Integrity IT can provide more information on this and any other IT Security concerns you may have – just reach out.

 

*Verizon 2017 Data Breach Investigations Report

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One Comment

  1. What is 2FA? | Integrity IT Says :
    Posted on May 16, 2017 at 7:40 pm

    […] Something You Know: your password is the most common first layer, but as we know, passwords are easy to steal, hack and sometimes we just give them away by sharing and by creating lousy passwords like 123456.  But a strong password is an important line of defense that you must embrace – learn more about building strong passwords here. […]