Passwords provide the first line of defense against unauthorized access to your online accounts. Yet most people still aren’t taking passwords seriously. According to a PEW survey, while 91% of adults felt they have lost control of their personal information online, 41% have shared their password with others, 39% use the same or similar passwords across accounts, and 25% admit to using simpler, less secure passwords because they are easier to remember. Moreover, nearly two-thirds of respondents claimed to memorize their passwords, while a further 18% write passwords down on paper. How hard can it be to create a strong password?
Better password practice need not be difficult, though. To mark World Password Day we’d like to share some tips from our Digital Literacy training program – and show you that P455phr4535c4nb3f#n!
How To Create a Strong Password
- Pick 4-5 random, common words that are easy to remember (e.g “battle play mango staple”).
- Group the words together (e.g “battleplaymangostaple”).
- Swap letters with numbers that look similar (e.g “b4tt13pl4ym4ng0st4p13”).
- Add some special characters (e.g “#b4tt13pl4ym4ng0st4p13%”).
- If the resulting password is at least 14 characters, you now have a secure password, otherwise start over using different (longer) words.
✅ Always use a mix of letters, numbers and symbols.
✅ A password should be at least 16 characters long. The longer the password, the better.
✅ Use different passwords for each account you create.
✅ Change your passwords regularly.
❌ Never use personal information in your password such as phone numbers, birthdays, etc.
❌ Avoid common words such as “password”, “love”, etc.
❌ Avoid using sequences such as ”abcd1234”, or letters positioned together on the keyboard like “qwerty”.