Today is World Password Day – a great reason to have a think about your passwords, identify things you could improve, and take action to secure your digital identity.
Using easy passwords
Most of us aren’t very good at choosing or making up secure passwords.
Two of the most common passwords are “123456” and “password”. So, first of all, you need to make sure you’re using passwords that can’t be easily guessed. Other commonly used (and guessed) passwords include names of family members (including the furry ones).
This is a definite no-no. We have seen so many cases of data breaches where people’s personal information, including passwords have been released. A survey by of 2,000 individuals in the United States, Australia, France, Germany, and the UK recently revealed the high incidence of password reuse.
Some 91% of the respondents claimed to understand the risks of using the same passwords across multiple accounts, but 59% said they did so anyway. For the majority, it was the fear of forgetfulness that was the primary reason for password reuse.
Let’s face it, remembering all the different passwords is difficult. How do you keep track of them? Obviously writing them down all in one place is convenient, but what happens if you misplace your little black book of passwords? And how easily can someone take over your identity with this information.
What should you do?
There are a variety of password vaults you can use. These include LastPass, 1Password and Apple’s Keychain Access. The main thing to ensure with any of these is that you create a very secure, yet memorable master password to access this vault.
Most of these password managers can not only store your passwords, but can generate complex passwords, which ensures greater online security.
Where possible utilise Two-Factor Authentication (2FA). This requires a second step to the login process, but in doing so makes it much more secure. The first step is usually a password or a pin (something that you can remember). The second step is usually something only you have access to, e.g. an app on your phone, such as Google Authenticator, or a fingerprint ID.
Up-to-date anti-virus software is also a necessity. Viruses can be utilised to steal personal data from you, so make sure your software is up-to-date with updates installed as required.
If you have concerns about your online safety Stay Smart Online is a great starting resource.
The technicians at Gee Bees Media are also ready, willing and able to assist you with any queries.