Passing the password grade

E-mail address and passwordThe UN has warned of a password “explosion” today (BBC News: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/6199372.stm). The number of passwords, accounts, and logins Internet users re-use makes their personal security and data risks all the greater. By re-using the same details each time puts many people at risk of identity theft.

Here is some good advice on what makes a good password or PIN:

First of all categorise your passwords down into three groups; email, banking, and daily use (i.e. shopping).

Now for each group should be assigned a password, or a variation of an original one. So for example, your password is ‘london’, create variables for your three groups:

  • Email: london123
  • Banking: LONdon789
  • Daily use: london

Adding numbers and UPPER and lower case letters will make it much more secure. By adding numbers to your password, this will make it much more difficult to crack.

A good password should be at least 8 characters. Most sites or services allow up to 16 characters in length.

PIN numbers should be relevant numbers to you, but not your year of birth, your wedding date, or the last four digits of your phone number. These are all very easy to break or find out. If it helps, most keypads have alphanumeric keys on (numbers and letters above, like on telephones), create a four letter word to remember (be tasteful!).

Hope this info has helped and got you thinking.

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