Is that too strong of a statement? (Ask those people who have had their Linkedin and Facebook accounts hacked recently).
And the bad part is that it can be prevented SO EASILY! With client data and our business information so readily available on the web, we need to make sure it is protected.
CLIFF NOTES VERSION
Here is the short and sweet version (because I know how busy you are!). There are several camps out there about how to "build" the perfect password(s) but take this ONE tip away today:
**** CHARACTER COUNT MATTERS MOST *****
In other words, a password of: jay01 is much worse than jayobrien01 and even better is jayobrienrealtorkansascity01
(Just think about it... every time you add any kind of character, at multiplies the amount of possible solutions exponentially!)
IS THAT ALL?
NO. There are other tricks to use. For starters, don't use a passWORD... use a passPHRASE that you can remember. Like this:
Another way to add security is with UPPERCASE letters, NUMBERS and SPECIAL CHARACTERS like $!&* within the word. Some people even replace numbers for letters, like 3 for E (L3TTER insead of LETTER) or characters in place of letters so you can remember them (h@ppy instead of happy). So let's make that passPHRASE stronger:
Wow, I doubt that will be guessed. Another idea is to use a number in your phrase so you can remember it easier:
WHAT TO AVOID
-- DON'T use a spouse/kid/name as the word. Those come up as a dictionary word and will be broken fast.
-- DON'T just add a "0" or "1" to the end of a name (like JayOBrien01) since most require a number in the password (hackers and their software are smart)
-- DON'T use a common word plus a number, since those will be found in a dictionary search.
-- DON'T make it too short
-- DO use a passPHRASE, not a passWORD. How about "myFavoriteNumberIs44!" as a password? Ther are uppers, lowers, a character at the end and it's a phrase you can remember with LOTS of characters in it.
-- DO substitue a number or character for a letter like hAppin3ss for "happiness"
-- DO use a capital letter for extra security (some websites now require this)
Passwords are in our lives every day. Make it harder on the bad guys and tighten yours up today.