16/10/2013

What makes a good password?

Picture by Ron Bennetss
Using many applications and personalized websites (my***.com), both at work and at home, you have to manage many passwords. But how to create strong and useful ones?

First of all, security is not about technical measures. First of all, it's about behaviour. Don't post passwords to your monitor and don't share them (do you share your toothbrush?). If someone looks after your stuff during your holidays, autorise him/her for your applications. Always log off after using an application, system or website.

When choosing a password, create a strong one. It needs to be long, not logical (don't use names of your dog, spouse and kids, your birthdate, your hobby, your favorite rockstar, etc.) and includes fonts in upper and lower case, numbers and special characters (like !, @ or #). Also use different passwords for different applications.

That's a bunch of requirements. But how to remember them? I'll explain how to create useful passwords. First of all create a base password. Use a sentence, the first line of a song or the title of a movie. For example you may remember "Houston, we have a problem". This would result in "Hwhap" (even better, include the ",").

Then add some special characters and numbers. For example an exclamation mark (as this situations was really serious), your wife's birthday and another special character. You may get "!26061980+".

To make your passwords unique, you may add an system specific part. For Yahoo!, you may add "Yo!"

Logging in to Yahoo! requires "Hwhap!26061980+Yo!". Easy isn't it? ;-) It has a certain length, is rather strong and easy to remember. Interested in the subject? The guys of MakeUseOf.com wrote an excellent guide about passwords.

Still difficult to remember passwords? There are some password manager applications to store your private information. Personally, I like KeePass. Be sure to create a strong password for it and to remember it. ;-)

How do you manage your passwords?

Secure your information!

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