What makes a good password?

Updated: Mar 13, 2019

image of a password

Fact: 73% of users have the same password for multiple sites, 33% use the same password every time.

Creating strong passwords may seem like a daunting task, especially when the recommendation is to have a completely unique password that is difficult to work out. Anyone would be intimidated if they had to create and memorise multiple passwords like Wt4e-79P-B13^qS!

Having an easy to guess or weak password can pose a number of risks such as people impersonating you to commit fraud and other crimes, including:

  • Accessing your bank account

  • Purchasing items online with your money

  • Impersonating you on social networking and dating site

  • Sending emails in your name

  • Accessing the private information held on your computer

It may seem obvious nowadays that you need a strong password and not something as easy to guess as "Password1" or anything directly related to your personal life such as "MikeQu1ntech" can be easy to guess and will give a cyber criminal an easy way into your personal life and details, potentially causing a lot of harm and damage that can easily be avoided by having a strong password.

How do I create a strong password?

Choose a password with at least eight characters (more if you can, as longer passwords are harder for criminals to guess or break), a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers and keyboard symbols such as @ # $ % ^ & * ( ) _ +. (for example SP1D3Rm@n – a variation of Spiderman, with letters, numbers, upper and lower case).

However, be aware that some of these punctuation marks may be difficult to enter on foreign keyboards. Also remember that changing letters to numbers (for example E to 3 and i to 1) are techniques well-known to criminals.

An 8-character password with letters (upper & lower case) includes numbers and symbols has 6,095,689,385,410,816 possible combinations! The chances of a cyber criminal going through that many different combinations are incredibly slim and gives you a much stronger chance of not having you password compromised.

Should I have a different password for different websites?

The short answer to this is, yes. It may seem like a frustration and hassle to have a different password for each website you use. However, in the unlikely event of your password being compromised (with it being a strong password) and you have the same password across multiple platforms such as: Online banking, Social media & emails, then all of your personal data is compromised. However, if you have a different password for individual websites you decrease the risk of being the victim of a cyber attack with your password being guessed and having personal and confidential data breached.

Quintech are invested in their clients data security and safety so have implemented password policies across our client's staff workstations and their servers. We are committed to the highest standards and best practises and make sure that our clients are as well protected and secure as possible. If you are interested in learning more about what Quintech can do for your business, get in touch with me today! 01684 882774 or mike.philpott@quintech.co.uk

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