March 4, 2016

Password Security Tips You May Not Have Heard Before

Odds are that if you use a computer you’ve already heard some advice about keeping your passwords safe. For example, most of us know that we shouldn’t keep a passwords list on our computers or that we shouldn’t use the same password in several places. But here are some quick password security tips you may not have heard before.

Security Questions
Many sites ask you to choose from a list of security questions or to create your own. Often we choose questions that we can easily remember the answer to, but experts suggest a different strategy: give fake or nonsense answers instead. If you use real answers, would-be hackers can try to find the information on public sites such as Facebook, or they can play guessing games, especially if they know you. So next time a site asks for your childhood best friends’ name, write your favourite book character or celebrity.

Password Recovery Email Addresses
Websites may also ask you for an email address where they will send password recovery information. You shouldn’t use your personal email address for this purpose because hackers may be able to access your passwords from that account and then change your passwords. Instead experts suggest that you create a separate account for recovery emails that you don’t use for any other reason. Choose a username that’s not connected to your real name to make it harder to guess.

Pass Phrases
When choosing a password, experts suggest that you avoid any single words that can be found in a dictionary. Instead try a pass phrase made of several words or a sentence that means something to you. For example, if you like animals your pass phrase could be “catdogbunny” or “giraffesareawesome.”