You can read about the power of your word in religious and philosophical works throughout history. In your digital life, where everything is inter-connected, your word is more important than ever.
Today, we’re going to concentrate on the most important word in your digital life – your PASSWORD.
Notice I said password. In reality, most of us have several passwords for the places we visit online. If you’ve read this far, you’ve probably lost a password recently. I have! You’re not alone. I’ve worked in government, banking, and other highly secured environments and everywhere people make password mistakes. Losing a password is the best case. Having your reputation, assets, and identity stolen is what you really want to avoid!
Hackers see your password list as a blank check. It should be guarded just like any other sensitive piece of information. You should never carry a password list with you. So what to do when you have 10, 20, or more different “things” to login into on your digital devices? Each login has different password rules: numbers, capitals, special characters, length, etc. Some sites even make you change the password often (as you should), and you may not even be able to use an old password!
That’s a lot to remember. So, in a series of articles, we’ll cover a strategy to get control of your passwords.
We’ll break down a strategy into four simple steps:
3. Implement a plan
4. Stay safe
Now, to convince you to stay with us for a few short reads, here are a few things I’m going to guess you’ve used for passwords:
- combinations of names (first, middle, last, maiden, family, significant other, pet)
- easy numeric combinations (birthdays, family birthdays, parts of ID’s like SSN, 1234)
- simple dictionary words
- parts of your address
- anything to do with hobbies
That’s just a little starting intuition from a hacker on the good guys’ side. Imagine a little more perseverance, combined with some background information on you. Now add in the fact that there are ways to try thousands of combinations of passwords in minutes with “brute force” hacking tools.
Want to read some more on the history of passwords? Check out this infographic:
You need to be in control of your passwords to enjoy the Digital Life!
Next: Step 1 – Get Organized