Concerned about protecting your financial transactions and private data stored online? A strong password policy is your front line of defense against security threats, scammers and hackers. Implementing password security best practices is as important at work as it is at home.
You need to understand the severity that easy-to-guess passwords bring. Also, no, you cannot have the same password for twenty different accounts, only because it is easy to remember. Let’s get straight to the point and go through some of the best policies that will help you create reliable, secure passwords.
10 Password Security Best Practices
What to DO
- Character Length: The more characters you have, the more difficult it is to crack. However, use at least 8 characters to meet the bare minimum security best practice.
- Character Type: Use a combination of ASCII characters — uppercase, lowercase, numbers, and symbols. It will narrow down the overall chances of your password being compromised. Example: XkeDZaJ3%yIOd3
- Password Dictionaries: The password should not be listed in the popular password dictionaries. There are online tools where you can check against known password lists.
- Password Manager: Are your passwords too long and complex to remember? Use a password manager.
- Password Generators: There are random password generators available online that offer better password security.
What NOT to do
- Dictionary Words: Do not use words right out of the dictionary. If your passwords are meaningful, they are probably already hacked.
- Password Change Requirements: Don’t fight the password change intervals setup by your company or application vendors, although it may seem tedious, it’s being implemented to help secure you and the company you work for.
- Pet Names: No doubt, you love your cat and it is adorable to dedicate your password after it. But, don’t! Hackers can guess it easily. The same goes for people, places, and events.
- Password Reuse: If you are forced to change your password, do not change it from “Utopian.Knight1” to “Utopian.Knight2”. Do over, create a new one.
- Adjacent Keyboard Strings: qwerty7894 is not a secure password. Do not use keyword patterns in any form.