Wait…what’s my password again? It happens to all of us. But as inconvenient as remembering multiple passwords to multiple online accounts can be, using something as generic as “Password123” isn’t always the safest alternative.
In fact, creating strong passwords is one of the best ways to keep your personal information safe from scammers. Here are three simple tips from the National Cyber Security Alliance for creating strong passwords for your accounts:
Make your password a sentence.
A strong password is at least 12 characters long and includes a mix of letters, numbers and symbols. One way to help remember strong passwords is by creating a positive sentence or phrase personal to you. For example, something like “I love Country music!” maybe be easier for you to remember. On many sites, you can even use spaces in your passwords. To make your phrase even more secure, you could substitute numbers or symbols for letters, such as “I l0v3 C0untry mu$ic!”
Don’t use the same password over and over.
Unique account? Use a unique password. Having separate passwords for every account helps to prevent cybercriminals from stealing your information. At a minimum, separate your work and personal accounts and make sure that your critical accounts have the strongest passwords.
Lock down your login.
Reinforce your online accounts by enabling the strongest authentication tools available – such as biometrics, security keys or unique one-time code through an app on your mobile device. Your usernames and passwords may not be enough to protect key accounts like email, internet banking and social media.