With information theft now the most common cybercrime facing large organizations as well as the average Internet surfer, it’s easy to feel helpless in the face of overwhelming statistics. In 2019 alone, an estimated $2 trillion was lost to cybercrime, and 80% of hacking breaches were related to passwords.
The tide of high-tech crime may be surging, but the first and most important thing you should do to protect yourself is to create a difficult-to-hack password. Take your digital security in your own hands and craft a password a programmer would be proud of with our simple step-by-step guide.
Password length: Hackers may employ a “brute force attack,” a computer program that runs through every possible password combination. The longer and more complex your password is, the more difficult it is to crack.
Social media: Don't create a password or security answer using information you may have shared on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. That includes your birthdate, hometown, and the names of your pets!
Imagination: Long passwords are good, but passwords that include random nonsensical words are even better. Put your creativity to good use and create a variety of made-up passwords with a combination of different symbols, numbers, and phrases. It’s important not to use the same one for multiple sites.
Password manager: Once you’ve created an anthology of colorful passwords, use a password manager such as LastPass or 1Password so you don’t have trouble remembering them.
Two-factor identification: Optional two-factor identification adds a valuable layer of security by asking for periodic authentication. Once you enter your password, a secondary code is sent to your phone or email that you’ll need to unlock your account.
Our last and most pertinent tip: Stay ahead of the hackers and update your passwords as often as you can. For sensitive information, changing your password every 30 days is recommend.