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Plato Grishin
Plato Grishin

Is Your Password Secure Enough

Long passwords are more secure than short passwords. We recommend using passwords that are anywhere from 16 to 20 characters long, although nearly half of Americans use passwords of eight characters or fewer.

Is Your Password Secure Enough

One of the main causes of data breaches is compromised password security. Cybercriminals try to access your information for multiple reasons but the most common one tends to be financial gain. Building strong secure passwords and keeping them private are crucial steps to secure your personal information and other information you might handle at work.

Passwords you need to memorize. There will always be some passwords that you need to know by heart. The password for your company laptop, for example, or the one required to unlock your password manager. We recommend using a strong but memorable passphrase in these instances.

A four-word passphrase (56 bits) is strong enough for the password that you use to log into 1Password because we hash it well. We estimate that it would cost an attacker about $76 million USD to crack that.

Two-factor authentication is the default security method for most Apple IDs. Certain Apple services and features, such as Apple Pay and Sign in with Apple, require two-factor authentication. We recommend that you use two-factor authentication and protect your device with a passcode (or login password on Mac) and Face ID or Touch ID, if your device supports it.

If you're already using two-factor authentication with your Apple ID, you can't turn it off. If you updated to two-factor authentication inadvertently, you can turn it off within two weeks of enrollment. If you do, your account is less secure and you can't use features that require a higher level of security.

When you sign in with your Apple ID user name and password for the first time on a new device or the web, you'll receive a notification on your trusted devices that someone is trying to sign in with your Apple ID. The notification might include a map of the approximate location of the sign-in attempt. This location is based on the new device's IP address and might reflect the network that it's connected to, rather than the exact physical location. If you know that you're the person trying to sign in but don't recognize the location, you can still tap Allow and view the verification code. If you're not the one trying to sign in, tap Don't Allow to block the sign-in attempt.

After you sign in, you won't be asked for a verification code on that device again unless you sign out completely, erase the device, or need to change your password for security reasons. When you sign in on the web, you can choose to trust your browser, so you won't be asked for a verification code again on that computer for 30 days.

With two-factor authentication and an Apple device, you have the option to generate a recovery key to help improve account security. If you need to reset your password, you can then use your recovery key to regain access to your Apple ID.

If you forget your Apple ID password, you can try to regain access using your trusted device protected by a passcode. Or you can use your recovery key, a trusted phone number, and an Apple device to reset your password. Make sure the device is running iOS 11 or macOS High Sierra or later, and be sure to enter the complete recovery key including upper-case letters and hyphens. Learn more about what to do if you forget your Apple ID password.

Weak and easy-to-guess passwords make even the soundest cybersecurity strategy easy to bypass. If a hacker guesses or cracks a password, the intruder can access your account or system without raising the alarm and compromise whatever asset you kept safe behind a password.

While 89&^598 is entirely random, the first password is less secure than the second one. A password-cracking program could guess the 89&^598 in about 44 hours while cracking ILoveMyCatLordStewart would require 7 years of constant processing.

This fun yet strong password idea requires you to list the ISO codes of your favorite countries or counties you visited (that way, you can update your password every time you visit a new nation). You will get something like this:

If you decide to use this method, be careful not to use common misspellings (such as "acommodate"). Hackers feed cracking programs with password lists with all usual wording errors, so the more obscure your password is, the better.

Even if someone steals your password, you can still prevent the intruder from accessing your account. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds an extra layer of security to your account by requiring the user to provide the following during login:

If you wish to protect your business from stolen identities and passwords, you can implement MFA via a specialized app your employees install on their smartphones. Google's Authenticator and Authy are two great free options, both tools that generate a one-time PIN that serves as an additional factor during login.

You (and your employees) should always use a VPN when typing in or exchanging passwords on public Wi-Fi. A VPN ensures no one is intercepting your username and password when you log into your account.

A password manager keeps track of all your passwords and does the remembering for you. All you remember is the master password which grants access to the management program (which is, hopefully, a strong password protected with MFA).

An average brute force program can try over 15 million key attempts per second, so 9 minutes is enough to crack most seven-character passphrases. Brute force attacks are the main reason why we insist on a 12-character minimum for passwords.

A hacker can intercept credentials when victims exchange passwords via unsecured network communications (without VPN and in-transit encryption). Also known as sniffing or snooping, eavesdropping allows a hacker to steal a password without the victim noticing something is wrong.

If someone steals or guesses your password, that person can easily bypass all other security measures protecting your data. The strong password ideas in this article can help keep you safe and ensure your passphrases never ends up in the wrong hands.

Following these guidelines is not easy. Strong passwords are harder to remember which leads to even worse password practices like writing your password down on a sticky note stuck to your monitor or putting them in an Excel file saved on your desktop (neither are secure practices).

You are much better off using a password manager to create and store your passwords. A password manager is basically a lockbox of all of your passwords that will automatically fill them in for you on most sign-in forms (you can also copy/paste if needed).

This is similar to the two-step verification now used by most social networks, online retailers and free email services (like Gmail). They require you to enter a password plus a one-time code sent to your phone to complete the transaction. Having an extra hoop to jump through can be annoying, but if it keeps your information safe it's well worth the extra time.

Talk to your IT company about turning on MFA for your email account, computers, and anywhere else you store sensitive data (like your CRM or ERP system). These can usually be set up in a way to whitelist your office IP address so you just use your password while you're on site.

If you've ever been in one of my live "Tech Talks with Tom", you'll remember that I'm a big advocate of protecting yourself online. Protecting yourself optimally is done in layers: strong, unique passwords, two-factor authentication, and trusting nobody online implicitly are just a few of those layers you can utilize to protect your online experience. Today, I wanted to take a moment to talk about strong passwords, and how a strong, unique password is one of the best things you can do to, not only protect your FOREVER Account, but ALL of your online accounts.

Utilizing a password manager makes this a trivial challenge! Password managers like LastPass, BitWarden, KeePass, and many others can help automate the creation of these secure passwords, and will also provide a secure central repository you can easily reference back to whenever you need to access your online accounts. I myself utilize LastPass, and currently have 208 separate online accounts in my password vault. All of them meet the above requirements, and all I need to remember to access all 208 accounts is the password for my vault itself!

Now, that all said, if you heed my advice and begin to utilize a password manager (and if you already are, give yourself a nice pat on the back!) you will still need to remember one secure, unique password to access your manager with. I'd like to share with you a pretty famous comic in my profession that I think does a great job of explaining a simple way to help create something memorable but still secure.

I'd like to challenge everyone reading this to take an hour of your time to setup a password manager, and to begin changing your online passwords (starting with your FOREVER account) to all meet the above requirements for a secure password! It's especially important to protect your accounts that manage access to your email, financial accounts, and any other sensitive information!

One important difference between an online password and a Hello PIN is that the PIN is tied to the specific device on which it was set up. That PIN is useless to anyone without that specific hardware. Someone who obtains your online password can sign in to your account from anywhere, but if they obtain your PIN, they'd have to access your device too.

An online password is transmitted to the server. The password can be intercepted in transmission or obtained from a server. A PIN is local to the device, never transmitted anywhere, and it isn't stored on the server.When the PIN is created, it establishes a trusted relationship with the identity provider and creates an asymmetric key pair that is used for authentication. When you enter your PIN, you unlock the authentication key, which is used to sign the request that is sent to the authenticating server.Even though local passwords are local to the device, they're less secure than a PIN, as described in the next section. 041b061a72


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