It seems that absolutely everything, on and off the web, requires a password these days. When creating passwords, stay away from obvious personal information like your birthdate, kids birth dates, anniversary,address and pets names. Use multiple words and non-words, things that can’t be found in the dictionary. Jim, my tech expert from HelpDotNow tells me that run on sentences like ILIKETREES are good because a hacking program will have a harder time as this is a “word” not found in the dictionary and hacking programs are not generally stopping to parse the phrase into words. Changing some elements of the word with capitals, numbers, or special characters, like ILIketr33s, is even better, but still relatively easy for you to remember. If you can remember passwords, or at least the few that you use most often, that will save you time.
Computer experts would not recommend this, but in real life, consider having three different types or categories of passwords. The first type would be for high stakes sites like a bank account, PayPal, email account, or an encryption program. They should be pretty complex but still something that you can memorize. The second level would be for useful sites, perhaps those like computer support sites and other shopping sites you frequent. The third type of password could be almost a throw-away, something that you might use for a site you’ll never intend to visit again. Decide how much effort you want to put into each type of password, and design them as secure as you can for each level.
Now that you have your passwords, how do you organize them and where do you store them? Hint: a sticky note is not the best answer. Stay tuned for the next rivetting post.