Tips on creating strong passwords

Good, strong passwords can help you to protect your identities in a number of different ways. Following is some advice from University of Colorado:

First, it's good to remember that despite the term, there is no need for passwords to be actual words. Indeed passwords that are not actual words are harder to guess (an extremely desirable property). One of the best ways to keep your computer and your private information protected is to have a strong password.

Some tips for strong passwords...

* DON'T use your login name in any form; as-is, reversed, capitalized, doubled, etc.
* DON'T use any names, be it a relative of yours or character in a novel, book, or movie.
* DON'T use other information easily obtained about you. This includes birthdates, license plate numbers, telephone numbers, your street name, etc.
* DON'T use a password made up of all digits, or of all the same letter. This significantly decreases the search time for a hacker.
* DON'T use a word contained in English or foreign language dictionaries, spelling lists, or other words lists.
* DON'T use a password shorter than six characters.
* DON'T share your password with anyone.
* DON'T use consecutive or adjacent keys.
* DON'T share your password.
* DON'T use "remember my password features."
* DO use a mixed-case password, such as HYuj4iP or 3rtIdlP.
* DO include a mix of upper and lower case, numbers, and punctuation
* DO use a password that you can type quickly without having to look at the keyboard. This makes it harder for someone to steal your password by watching over your shoulder.
* DO change your password regularly.
* DO use a long password (at least 6 characters)
* DO have classes of passwords:

o Office
o Financial
o Personal

Following are some other resources that might help you to create "good" passwords:

Use LoginBooklet to save HINTS, instead of login names and passwords

Store hints about your site login names and passwords  instead of  the actual names and passwords. Using hints which jog your memory and help you recollect the name, password and personal data help you in both ways - you get  improved privacy and create different net-identities on different sites.

For example, a hint for your travel site login name could be "the butler's first name in the last cruise ship, followed by cabin number with a plus sign in the middle". On LoginBooklet, nobody knows who you are, let alone the cruise you went on, the butler's name, your cabin number and so forth. Therefore, only you (and co-travellers, if any) can "build" the true login name from this hint.

Another example - the password Iw21wIfvP, a difficult to remember string of letters and numbers, derives from, "I was 21 when I first visited Paris," is probably easily remembered by the creator.

Creative hints like these are simple, easy and effective. Unfortunately, until now,  there has never been an easy way to create and save so many different hints for different sites and get hold of them when you need them. 

Now, LoginBooklet solves that problem for you.

Delete suspect accounts and create new accounts as you need

If you suspect foul play on any site, delete your existing account on that web site and create another with new login name,  password and related data. Do it as often as you need. This is no different from the case where you tell your bank to cancel a credit card if you suspect foul play and ask them to reissue a new card. They do it for you - so should  the sites.

If your favorite web site does not yet support deleting accounts and transferring your brownie points from old account to new, let them hear from you. Your net-identity is yours to keep. Keeping it safe is your responsibility and they must help you to do so.

Once you create a new account, update that site entry in LoginBooklet, reencrypt the data and save. You will be back in control! 

 

 

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