Using the same password on multiple Internet sites is very dangerous! If your password is compromised on one site, criminals can use it to access your other accounts: banking, email, PayPal, Facebook, Twitter, your website, blog, gaming accounts, whatever is important to you online.
Years of work and lots of money can suddenly disappear.
Sadly, this happens all the time. Criminals break into one site and use the email addresses and passwords they find to break into other accounts that use the same passwords and email combinations.
Here are several strategies to easily make your passwords safer and more secure – Warning: If a key logger is on your PC, all your passwords are easily read anytime by the owners of the key logger.
“One way to make your web identities more secure” Technology Review say, “is simply to acknowledge that there are entire classes of websites for which you should simply pretend that your password is already public.”
They recommend establishing several different layers of importance and dealing with each layer independently. It’s an excellent article.
Experts also recommend using Complex Passwords – unidentifiable sequences of letters and numbers that do not use common names or nouns like: Oscus$btdel
This is much harder to guess or crack than common names or nouns which are all too often used as part of passwords. The problem is remembering these complex passwords without writing them down.
Here’s a tip to make remembering complex passwords easy: Use the first letter of a well known song or poem and add a special character at the end of each phrase. Select a song or poem that has special significance to you or with limited knowledge or recognition.
Then write a clue that makes it easy for you to remember the song or poem you selected, like: flag$
And be sure to keep your password clue sheets with your user names absolutely secure.
Can you easily guess what the phrase was? Take a moment and see if you can figure it out: Oscus$btdel from the clue: flag$
“Oh say can you see, by the dawn’s early light”
Or use the chorus of your favorite Rolling Stones song and write down the clue: Stone% and don’t tell people what your favorite Rollings Stones song is.
Another EASY way to create UNIQUE passwords for each site you regularly visit is to use a sentence that includes the name of the site in the password:
TspitwsoGM2 - The smartest person in the world signs onto GMail2
Keep your phrase VERY SECRET! Be careful to select a phrase that is not easily guessed and change your special phrase regularly.
Remember that most passwords are easily recoverable and can be quickly reset if you cannot remember the phrase you selected.
Define your own written Password Security Plan that identifies and protects your most important online access and acknowledges which passwords are most likely to be compromised by sloppy data security.
Keep your list of clues safe and change your most important passwords (banking, PayPal) regularly.
For more on this see: Seven Ways to Avoid Getting Hacked by Anonymous
Please comment and let us know what you think.
Good luck and safe computing!
Copyright 2011 by The Happiness Hacker. Free Use Granted when the source is cited and a link to HappinessHacker.com is included prominently with the posting.