Your Passwords Are the Key to Your Kingdom

November 9, 2012 | By More
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All kinds of numbers and letters can make up a password.   Certain dates bring back terrific memories like birthday parties with cake and ice cream.  Words can trigger happy activities like swimming, hiking, and canoeing (for me anyway).   There is also the argument about making passwords easy to remember.  Here is the challenge.  As account handling, shopping, communication, and a host of other activities have transitioned to the digital world, protecting access has become more important than ever before.  The keys to your kingdom are no longer just a physical key, but a series of keystrokes that can invite disaster if you’re not careful.

I wanted to briefly visit the conversation about passwords and your online accounts.  For younger students who are just beginning to enter the digital world of accounts, this is a great learning moment.  For those who are experienced online account users, it’s a good opportunity to review what you already know.  For you experienced users, I look at it this way.  Every so often, our office building holds fire drills for employees to practice getting out of the building safely and in an orderly fashion.  The point is to prepare for the worst and hope that a fire never occurs.  The same holds true for reviewing solid password protection practices.  We review best practices so we don’t slip up and make a mistake when it really counts.

Check out these best practice tips for online account passwords:

Tip #1:  Don’t share your passwords with anyone.  (I realize it’s a given, but I know people who share their passwords!)

Tip #2:  Create a complex password using a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters.  (An example would be:  B5i6?2M&4j3).

Tip #3:  Change your passwords monthly.

Just remember the three “Cs” for best practices on passwords:  Confidential/Complicated/Consistent.  If you do, it will help keep your account information and money safe from the “bad” guys.

Homework:

Take this opportunity to review your passwords.  Are they complex enough?  Put yourself on a schedule of changing your password at the beginning of every month.

Also, take a moment to review the Federal Trade Commission’s category on computer security for other topics related to keeping your identify and personal information safe!

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Category: Cyber Security, Fraud

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