On February 26th 2018, the owner of HaveIBeenPwned.com added 2,844 newly found data breaches with over 80 Million password and user credentials to his website which lists data and password breaches. In December of 2017, a file was found that contained 1.4 billion hacked and leaked credentials and passwords being traded on black-market websites, and over the course of the year before, Google identified 1.9 billion usernames and passwords that were exposed via data breeches and those same black-market sites. With this in mind, its now more important than ever to take control of your passwords and accounts with these easy 5 tips.
1. Length means everything: The strength of a password really relies on its length to prevent something like a brute force attack from gaining access. Over 8 characters can drastically increase the time needed for an attack to succeed as well as deterring the would be hacker from accessing your account. Remember, length means everything.
2. No use having a door lock if you don’t also have a deadbolt: If you can, use 2 factor authentication services. This adds a second layer of security to your password/account by making your phone or authenticator act as the “deadbolt” key needed to get into the proverbial house that is your account. Most email and account providers will include an option to activate this form of protection.
3. Use a password manager: Using a password manager like LastPass will help massively by allowing you to manage your passwords in one centralized location as well as allow you to generate random passwords for your accounts all safely hidden behind one password. Combine this with a 2 Factor Authentication scheme and your data will be even safer from those who would seek to gain access.
4. Change your password: Password experts seem to agree that for human made passwords, you are recommended to change the password once every 6 to 9 months. Of course, using a password generator and manager will help to prevent this from being needed, but it remains a solid piece of advice.
5. Don’t give your password out: This should come as no surprise, but you are highly recommended to never give out your password to anyone. Should you be required to do so, it is recommended that you create a 1 time use password to give out, and should you not be able to do this, to change your password immediately after the password has been used.
Here at Dynamic Computers, we can assist you in setting up your password managers and 2 factor authentications as well as help you to recover passwords you may have lost or forgotten. Please contact us at 423-805-9854 or come by our office at 6065 E Brainerd Rd Chattanooga, TN 37421 and let us help you today!