Every time we register on a new website, we have to provide a password and, since we have so many (Facebook, Instagram, PayPal, Gmail, etc.), it gets to a point where we cannot properly manage our access credentials. We believe we will go crazy trying to remember every single password, so we end up always using the same one to make our lives easier, even if we know it is not a good practice. What else could we do?
Do not use the same password to access different services: If your password were compromised at some point, the risk to your personal information would be considerably greater, as it would be possible to access not one of your services, but every single one for which you use the same access password. The attacker would only have to try each service to find out which ones are accessible.
Four seasons, four passwords: Change your passwords periodically without reusing them. This way you will ensure that your accounts are secure and, if they have been hacked in the past, the hacker will not have your updated data and thus will no longer be able to access your account.
Advice to create strong passwords:
Choose strong passwords with a minimum of 8 characters (the longer, the better; a minimum of 10 characters is advisable). You should use special characters (“&”), upper and lower case (think of a sentence you will never forget and use the initials: “To be or not to be” -> “Tbontb”) and numbers (any number that you like, for instance “2”).Put everything together and you will have a good password “&Tbontb2”.
If, in addition to this pattern, you add a differential element, such as the first letter of the website, you will have a different password for each service, and you will make your passwords even stronger.
Additionally, you should also:
- Avoid using passwords with a sequence of numbers and/or letters (abc123) as there are different common passwords that follow key patterns depending on the keyboard (Qwerty123 / Aaaaa / qwerty / 12345678 / asdfg).
- Avoid using names of relatives / friends / pets, and/or acquaintances.
- Avoid sharing your passwords. If you do, they will no longer be secret and you will risk the integrity of your personal data.
We can check the strength of our passwords at https:// howsecureismypassword.net/, which indicates how long it would take to hack our password with current algorithms.
When you work with many passwords and cannot remember all of them:
Use a password manager. You will only need to remember the password to access the manager, known as master key (it is necessary to remember at least this one), in order to see the rest of your passwords.
Why are passwords so important?
Passwords are the keys that give access to accounts in the virtual world. Through them, we gain access to the personal data registered on each account. If anyone were able to access someone else’s passwords, they would be able to compromise the privacy of the account in any of the following ways:
- Posting the name on social networks.
- Reading and answering emails posing as the legitimate owner of the account.
- Accessing online banking services.
- Making purchases on websites where the owner has an associated payment method.