Change Your Passwords Today
Recently, my Yahoo email account was compromised. A bogus link was sent to everyone in my contacts list. Grrr. Why does this happen?
Often, it’s a weak password to blame. Let’s say your password is “Fluffy1”. I know, I love my cats too!
Problem is, a computer program can run through the English dictionary (about 60,000 words), tack on a number, and keeping trying until it strikes a match and sails right on into your password protected email, photos, or even your bank accounts.
Please – don’t use weak passwords! I know it’s a challenge keeping up with what feels like hundreds of them, so here are some tips to help make it easier.
- DON’T use a password that has anything to do with you personally (children or pets’ names, street you live on, etc)
- Even better – DON’T use a word you can find in the dictionary
- DO use a password of at least 8 characters
- DO use a mnemonic to help you remember a string of characters
- DO replace numbers and symbols for letters, for example “$” instead of “S” or “3” instead of “E”.
|There was an old woman who lived in a shoe||twaowwlias||twa0wwlia$|
|Yankee Doodle came to town, ridin’ on a pony||ydcttroap||Ydc2tr0ap|
|I graduated #1 from Yale University Law school||ig#1fyuls||Ig#1fYuls!|
You can try to use the same password for all of your sites, or for even more protection, add a prefix or suffix to indicate the site, for example “tr” at the beginning or end of your chosen password for “Target”.