Introduction: How to Choose a Good Password: a Few Quick Tips on How to Stay Safe
Your password is more than just a key to your online account. If your password falls into the wrong hands, someone can easily impersonate you while online, sign your name to online service agreements or contracts, engage in transactions, or change your account information. So, choose your password carefully and then keep it safe from others.
A password is like a toothbrush: Choose a good one and don't share it.
A password can be any length, and can contain spaces, symbols, or numbers. With so many options, you should be able to come up with a password that's easy for you to remember but impossible for someone else to figure out. A password is a secret that only you should know.
Wanna make a good Password? Hit that next step button and find out how....
Most of the tips in this instructable taken from the Yahoo Security Blog. Check it out to stay up to date on computer security!
Step 1: How Should That Password Be? What Aspects Should It Have?
First and most important of all: A good Password should be memorable for you, yet hard for others to guess.
You might have the greatest Password on Earth, but It's worth nothing if you don't easily remember it!
A good example would be a celebrity's birth date. No one could guess that as a password, and you can easily look it up if you forget.
Avoid using a word. Avoid a complete word from a dictionary (English or otherwise) or a name.
You'd be surprised how easy it is for someone who knows you to guess your password. They know exactlywhat to expect, and what not to expect.
Use Psterboard instead of Posterboard
Use at least 10 characters.
The more characters your password contains, the harder it is for someone to guess it. A long but simple password can be safer than a short, complex one and often easier to remember.
Johnnywenttotheparkyesterday might be safer than 3iblesrules4
Use a combination of capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and standard symbols (! @ # $ % & *).
If the place that you want to create a password for differences capital and lowercase letters, be sure to use both. Even if someone hears your password, a different capitalization can make a difference.
Instead of automobile, write aUTomObile
Don't use personal information that someone could easily figure out.
Avoid a password based on information easily obtained about you (like your birthday, your child or pet's name, phone number, license plate number, employer, school name, automobile brand, or street name).
Don't use a password you already use for another account, such as your bank account PIN.
Like I said above, people who know you know what and what not to expect from you.
Try not to use your screenname as your password. Not even with Different capitalization or spelling.
Avoid the obvious.
This is where a lot of people screw up. People think that if they use a password thats not even a word or something along those lines, they'll be safe. People think that if they use something totally irrational, no one will expect that.
Stay away from obvious passwords such as "test" or "password."
When you change your password, change several characters; don't just append a number like "2" to the end. And make sure anyone watching you enter your password can't guess it as you type (such as a password typed using a single hand, like "qwerty").
Don't make it easy for attackers by repeating a digit or letter (like "111111" or "FFFFFF") or any other common sequence of characters (like "123456").
Put a new spin on a familiar phrase. MiX i+ Up!!
This is where you start mixing and experimenting with the above tips.
Pick a favorite phrase or lyric for your password.
To shorten it, substitute letters with a number or a standard symbol or remove vowels. For example, "fredsboy" can be made into "Fr3d$boy." Shorten "two tickets to paradise" to "2Tickets2Paradiz," or combine "cat" and "dog" into "cAt!Do8."
If you use a password generator, be careful.
Make sure you can identify and trust the creator of a password management or generator program. Never share any personal information unless you trust the company or person you're working with.
Online password-generator programs can help you create a random password that is generally harder to crack but also more difficult to remember.
Another factor to consider, is that sooner or later, you could find patterns in these, and eventually know what to expect.
Source - How do I choose my password?
Step 2: Avoid These Common Passwords
You know you are supposed to pick a password that you can easily remember. Unfortunately, cyberthieves know this weakness all too well, and try to hack into accounts just by using the most common passwords online first.
PCMagazine says these are the most commonly used passwords, so if yours is on the list, I recommend you change it immediately.
7. myspace 1
8. password 1
10. (your first name)
Any passwords that resemble these, should be avoided. You can probably think up other passwords that are too easy to figure out. Remember, a password must be hard enough, that if someone sees you typing it, they can't figure it out.
Step 3: Now It's Your Turn
I just gave you a few tips for a good password, and there's a lot more of them online, but even if you have the best password ever, it can't beat taking some simple measures to ensure that your computer is safe:
- Don't fall for scams!
No websites give away free stuff for being the x number visitor, and even if one did, it would't tell you in an ad or a flashing pop up.
Oh, and most important of all, if it flashes, don't click it!
- Trust your instincts
Better safe than sorry
- Be prepared
Now that you know some do's and don'ts, go on, and be safe!