Passwords are the first thing that you are requested to make when you apply for a job via a recruitment site or apply for a credit card. There are more and more reasons to be mindful of how you use your passwords as well as how often you update your passwords.
Here are some of the top password suggestions to keeping you and your site safe this year:
- Mix Letters, Special Symbols and Numbers
This first tip will help you maintain your security with a little bit of knowhow and common sense. Using simple passwords or reusing the same password across multiple sites does not increase the likelihood that your password will not be hacked and your data sold. Using special symbols such as !,*,$, and % is one way to introduce difficulty as well as decrease the likelihood that you will be hacked by dictionary attacks as well as by social engineering techniques.
- Use Two-Factor Authentication
This is another way to protect yourself as well as your password from hackers. Using Google Authenticator is one two-factor tool that adds an extra level of security. It is free to use, including on mobile devices. This can also be alleviated by making sure that you are not using public networks without security encryption or unfamiliar computers that you do not have 100% authorization over.
- Do not Store Your Password on any Device
Having to keep track of so many passwords across multiple sites means it is far too easy to just create a file on your desktop with these saved for easy access. This is a grievous error – do not compromise your data! Using special symbols and numbers provides another way of creating hard-to-guess passwords while basing them on actual letters, for example – in very simplistic terms – “P@55w0rd” is another way of writing “Password” using this method. . A tip for this is to give yourself clues instead of the actual password – this way only you know the answer and you will never need to actually write it down.
- Change Your Password Before Being Asked
This is a relatively easy solution to keeping your data safe. Most companies put a six-month period on your passwords, and some of the more stringent ones do not allow you to use the same password repeatedly, or the same password on two different logins. This way, you know the data that you are protecting will remain safe while also being proactive over your password security. This will also protect against keyloggers that may have infected your system if you do not change your password frequently, or if you do not have extensive anti-virus software enabled on your device.
- Avoid Creating Passwords that Contain Your Birth Date
This is a tip that is often not considered. Including your birthday in a password can give, hackers free access to some very specific data, which can be catastrophic when dealing with sensitive material such as bank accounts.