By Brittany Llorente
Media Marketing Associate
Today is Password Day!
This day was designed to be a reminder to update your passwords and keep yourself safe from phishers.
Here are some tips and tricks for making sure your password protects you in the way it should.
Never reuse your password
It’s super easy to get used to doing this. You don’t want to have to remember a million passwords and instead of forgetting each time you try to log in, you use the same password for your banking information as you do to get on Facebook or Twitter.
However, think of having the same key for everything in your life. While it may seem easier to just hang on to one key and only one key, if that key is ever stolen, you give that person access to everything in your life. This is what it is like online. If your password is leaked, or phished from one website, they now have access to all your information. Now they have access to any saved credit cards you may have on a website, your bank information, and possibly more.
Vary your password from site to site to make sure if one password is hacked, they only get access to that information and nothing else.
Second-Factor Authorization (2FA)
You may have noticed that more and more companies are requiring that you enter your cell phone number or alternate email to receive a second-factor authorization. This feature is another way of stopping hackers and phishers from receiving your information.
How does this work?
If someone enters your information to log into a site that requires second-factor authorization (or has it enabled), the site monitors the IP address that the site is being accessed through, the country it is being accessed through, or if the log in is the first in a certain period of time, the site will send a 2FA.
The 2FA is a code that is autogenerated by the site. The site will send the authorization to either your email or phone number. Once you confirm the code, the page will give you access to the site like normal.
Why is this good? If someone happens to have your password and attempts to access your information, even a correct password can trigger the 2FA, sending you a notice that someone is trying to log in using your credentials. You now have a chance to update your password with no information being stolen.
If given the option, always enable 2FA. It may be more of a hassle, but it also makes it more of a hassle for hackers. Don’t make their job easy.
Don’t use your family members, pets, or important dates in passwords
It’s amazing how often we put important information out there without realizing it. If you take a gander at my Instagram or Twitter, you can likely find out what my favorite animal is, what my pets’ names are, when I was married, when my birthday is, and what city I grew up in.
If any of your passwords have this information in it, change it now.
In addition to making sure this information is not in your password, make sure this information is not in your security questions. It’s too easy to find out your mother’s maiden name, your first pet’s name, and what street you grew up on.
Pick the crazy security questions that are popping up now that require an answer that likely only you would know.
How are you feeling about your passwords?
Here are some additional references and articles that may be of interest for those wanting better passwords.
How to create a strong password and remember it – Via How-To Geek
Stay safe out there, folks!