Passwords….we all have and use them & likely find remembering and changing them a frustrating practice. This usually leads us to using the same ones over and over on all of the websites we use. The problem is that this makes it far too easy for your online life to be compromised.
So what should we do instead
1. Make Your Password Longer
“A longer password is usually better than a more random password,” says Mark Burnett, author of Perfect Passwords, “as long as the password is at least 12-15 characters long.” In fact it is far better to use a longer password than some random combination of alphanumeric gibberish that is only 6-8 characters long.
2. Don’t bunch together your special characters
Most password fields as for combinations of special characters included in your password. This is good practice but the safest option is to ensure they are not bunched together. “Put your digits, symbols, and capital letters spread throughout the middle of your password, not at the beginning or end,” says Lorrie Faith Cranor, FTC Chief Technologist and Carnegie Mellon computer science professor.
3. Don’t use the same password
We all know this, but very few of us actually practice unique passwords for each website or service that we subscribe to. However, this is by FAR the most dangerous thing you can do and could very easily lead to your personal information being compromised.
4. Add 2 factor authentication
Two Factor Authentication is an extra layer of security that is known as “multi factor authentication” that requires not only a password and username but also something that only, and only, that user has on them. In most cases this is a unique temporary code sent to a mobile phone that needs to be entered to complete the login.
There’s got to be a better way?
I know what you’re saying by now – “Ok Jarrod, this is great but I have no way of remembering so many complex and unique passwords”. Is there some way of assisting me?
Fortunately there is & its the most game changing tool for securing your digital life that you MUST start using it. Introducing Last Pass.
What is LastPass?
Take a look at LastPass in action in the video below
Your Action Steps
- Sign up for a FREE account with LastPass
- If you use Google Chrome, Firefox or Safari you can download the browser extensions that auto log you in here
- Once setup start accessing your websites & the extension will begin to capture your sites into LastPass for use
- When signing up for new websites use the extension to generate a random secure password for your account.
- Turn on 2 factor authentication for LastPass so that only you can login to your password vault
Once you get this setup I guarantee you will NEVER need to hit the ‘Forgot Password’ button again as LastPass will do all the work for you. Best of all you will be able to have individual unique passwords for each of the sites you sign up to.