The important passwords are those required for logging into websites
Just recently a number of tech companies, including Yahoo, Adobe and Ebay sent out emails to their users asking them to change their passwords after an unknown cyber-attack compromised their databases containing customer information including names, passwords and credit card information. One of the more disturbing things that occurred as a result of these breaches was the release of user passwords. A recent report by Splash Data showed that the most common passwords found as a result of the breach was 123456 and password. Looks like we still haven’t learnt.
The idea of creating a strong un-crackable password for logging in to your computer is not necessary. Sure it’s a good idea to have a password for your computer because it stops anyone from being able to start up your computer and immediately have access to your personal files. But usually it can be a simple one. On one of my laptops the password is 00. A simple password is all you need because in a home situation nobody is trying to crack your password. It’s a deterrent at best. Usually the computer is set to also ask for a password if the screensaver kicks in and you come back to the computer or it goes to sleep after a period of time and after waking it asks for the password.
A strong password won’t stop someone after they steal your computer, they can have access to all your files in less than 10 minutes. I know, I do it all the time when I have to work on someones hard drive. Once the hard drive is out of the computer/laptop and connected up to my computer I have full access to all their files. Even if I don’t take the hard drive out I have a program that will zero out their password and allow me to startup their computer without the use of a password.
The important passwords are those required for logging into websites. Online merchants and secure websites aren’t doing a very good job of keeping your personal information safe. 2013 saw a seemingly endless series of breaches that exposed password data, at Adobe , Twitter, Tubmblr, and others. If the bad guys nabbed your password, you’re in trouble. But if you used that same password at other sites, you’re really in trouble. You need to use a different strong password on every site.
Let’s assume you log onto a bunch of different websites; Facebook, Gmail, eBay, PayPal, probably some banking sites, maybe a few discussion forums and probably much, much more.
This is where you need a strong password/s.
Here is an idea I would like to share on how to create strong un-crackable passwords. But, before I do that I’d like you to try and memorize the password below.
Seems impossible? Well, it isn’t. All you have to do is follow a few simple steps to create a password that is easy to remember yet hard to crack.
Step 1- Find the lyrics of a song and pick some words/verse from the song or just think of a song you really like which has at least 5+ words in it’s title. Then simply choose the first letter from every word in the verse or title of the song to create the first half of the password.
I’m a music lover so I chose the first letters from a song title by The Rolling Stones – It’s Only Rock N Roll But I Like It and used the first letter of every word as a character for my password.
It’s Only Rock N Roll But I Like It
Step 2- Decide if the song is projecting a happy or sad emotion.
I decided that the song was a happy tune and so gave it a smiley (emoticon) – :- )
Password: iornrbili:- )
Step 3- Add your birth year or any number you want at the end of the password.
I decided to add the year at the end of the password because it was simply easy to remember
Password:iornrbili:- )2014 16 characters long making it really strong
That’s it. You now have a strong, easy to remember and yes a very hard to crack password.
My example above Kaspersky’s password checker says it would be broken by ‘bruteforce attack‘ method in 8098 centries!
Now I can create a different password for every log in I need – all I have to do take note of the artist which will remind me of what the song is and I’m in.
If you have lots of log ins than maybe it’s time you got a password manager like RoboForm or another good one which is free as long as you don’t need to synchronize your passwords between devices is DashLane
Both these programs can create really strong passwords which you don’t have to remember because they are saved to your local password database on your computer and cannot be accessed by anyone without your Master Password. Examples of passwords created by RoboForm –
e9K0yDYi – This password will be bruteforced cracked with an average home computer in approximately 12years*
Roboform also allows you to decide how long a password you want and whether you want a mixture of Hexidecimal and characters like:
GiaxE*8X^eBoE3Oc (16 characters) which would take the Tianhe-2 Supercomputer The world’s fastest supercomputer (TOP500 list) 1000 centuries to crack*
zHXe8ee* (8 characters) would take the Tianhe-2 Supercomputer 10 minutes to crack* but your everyday computer such as Mac Book Pro (2012)
If you would like to check the strength of your passwords you can visit the * Kaspersky blog – http://blog.kaspersky.com/password-check/ to do so