Security Mishap Friday: Hackable Passwords Part I

Password security is something everyone always hears about.  Make sure that you have a strong password.  Weak passwords are hackable.  What I find that is not mentioned enough is what constitutes as a strong password is constantly increasing as hackers get better.  15 years ago they recommended adding uppercases to lowercases.  10 year ago they recommended adding numbers.  5-10 years ago they also recommended adding in symbols.  The definition of a strong password keeps shifting.

This is typically not a problem if you keep up with the latest requirements/recommendations for passwords.  Additionally, humans seem to be psychologically wired to make passwords easier to remember.  This is typically by using words that have some meaning to them.

My favorite exercise is to make a sentence that means something to you.  With the sentence, you would then take the first and/or second letters of the words.  Capitalize some, replace some with numbers or symbols.

If you are not that creative and don’t want to remember the password.  You are in luck!  There are solutions for these two issues.  First, there are password generators that will create a password for you.  The two I like to use the most are LastPass Password Generator and Norton Password Generator.

The next problem comes from remembering the passwords.  It is not recommended to reuse passwords, because once they crack one then they will crack all of your accounts.  Creative companies have created an automatic solution for this.  Dashlane and Last Pass 4.0 Premium are two password vault solutions that store your passwords in an encrypted vault.  These two options are nice as they both offer a cloud solution that you can access your passwords anywhere on any device.