In 2019, the National Cyber Security Centre in the UK revealed a list of the most hacked passwords pre-coronavirus, and the results seem too obvious to be true.
Among the top 10 most used passwords were:
It’s important to note that the majority of these passwords have actually been recurring passwords found in the list in previous years.
To avoid being an easy victim to hackers as a result of lazy password security, here are 6 practical tips to help you manage your passwords better.
Tip No. 1: Avoid Using Personal Information in Passwords
Finding your personal information is as easy as taking a peek at your social media habits. Without having to resort to complex tools, a hacker could easily guess your password according to the data you provide online.
Because of this, it’s important to avoid using any sort of data that could be classified as obvious information as your passwords. Data such as your name, birthday, pet’s name(s), family members’ names, favourite movie or series should be avoided at all costs while choosing your new password.
Tip No. 2: Use a Passphrase
Rather than using the normal technique of creating a password based on random letters, numbers and characters, opt for using a passphrase based on a sentence that can easily be remembered.
To protect yourself effectively, create a passphrase using at least 14 characters and add a mix of numbers, symbols and at least one capital letter for maximum security.
Tip No. 3: Do Not Reuse Passwords
Even if you have created the ultimate deadbolt password, it will not provide you with the best security if you reuse it across multiple accounts. This is especially true when it comes to using the same password for all of your social media accounts.
Be particularly careful to not use the same passwords for your personal and business accounts. Keep your digital presence safe by separating work from private life.
Tip No. 4: Set up a Two-factor Authentication Process
Many people prefer to avoid setting up multi-factor authentication to avoid the hassle of the process to log on to a single account, however, setting this up can be the security layer you need to be alerted when anyone tries to gain access to your accounts.
There are many different options to set up the two-step process so that you can choose to do the verification through SMS, email or by phone call so that it can be a more hassle-free process.
Tip No. 5: Keep Your Password Secret
Make sure you choose a password that you can remember on your own account without having to share it with anyone.
The biggest security liability there is when it comes to passwords is people. Do not share your password with anyone and maintain your information secret no matter how close a person is to you. Hackers can send intricate emails to friends and family members making a person believe that they need to enter a password to access an account urgently, making unexpected people fall victims to a scam.
Tip No. 6: Consider Using a Password Manager
Password managers help you to create complex passwords, while keeping your passwords updated and organised. They are the perfect tool to help you stay motivated to use more than one password to manage your accounts.
This tool helps to keep your passwords safe by encrypting your login information to access anything from websites to apps. Using a password manager eliminates the issue of having to remember several different passwords.