All about Passwords

keys

“I know what your password is! You don’t use one to log on to your computer, right? No? Ok wait then it’s: password. Am I right? No? Ok then it’s 123456 or your birthday, or your phone number, or some combination of that and your address. Maybe your pet’s name? …”

That was an example of how a hacker will think. You can have the most secure system in the world, but if your password is just that simple, then it’s like leaving your door wide open all the time, with a sign on the front lawn that says: “free stuff!”.

What’s the most secure password? – you might be wondering. Well, the simple answer is something random. Something completely unrelated to you. But it’s not enough to pick a passWORD anymore, because hackers will create programs that will simply guess thousands of words per minute until it’s found the right combination. Computers are now strong enough to run through every combination of letters in a 8-digit long password in a scary amount of time.

This means to pick a more secure password, you need a longer password. I think they should rename it to pass-phrase, because if you were to type a phrase with spaces and maybe even punctuation, you’d be surpassing any possibility of these kinds of ‘brute force’ hacks, as they call them. Adding stuff like upper-case or lower case variations, intentional typos, numbers and symbols will each time exponentially decrease the¬†likelihood¬†that a program will guess your password on accident.

Here’s an example of a really secure password:
aT8p98wymrdASdfP_Iu-9023urnklb[ph32!!@3[jnfjkasiocvxcvVYrdoiwdyfdn?>fjwhef

That’s me just smashing away at the keyboard. Who would ever guess this password? Who would ever REMEMBER this password? I certainly can’t. That’s why about 2 years ago I started using a password manager program to save a list of all my passwords. It saves this list in a highly encrypted file, that can only be accessed by typing one master password. Needless to say I’ve picked a pretty good one for that, which I was able to memorize just by using it a lot.

There are many different password managers out there today, but here’s the one I like:
http://keepass.info/

I like it because it has a windows version, an android version, and back in the day I even had it on my Windows 6.5 phone. Also, I like it because it’s free.

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