19 February, 2012

What's the Magic Password?

The one that stays secret!

Having a secure password plays a big part in staying safe online. Not only can it stop others accessing your information without your permission, it could stop a stranger stealing your identity.
Check the links at the bottom of this post for some great advice on creating a secure password. Remember to keep it private and to never write it down.

One of the best ideas for creating a secure password I've heard recently was to borrow a line from a favorite song. Here's how it works:

Using a Song/Phrase
'Party rock is in the house tonight'
Use the first letter from each word - priitht
To mix this up further I'll make all the constanents capitals (passwords are case sensitive) PRiiTHT

Adding Numbers
It's important to also have numbers in your passwords. Try not to choose a birthdate or anything that could be easily connected to you, ie street address, phone number.
Try to create your own system for adding numbers. Here's an example:
Let's say my favourite number was 4. To create a different password for different sites I visit, I could use the same password with one simple change. Count the letters in the name of the site and multiply it by your favourite number.
So Hotmail would be 7 letters X 4 = 28. So my hotmail password is PRiiTHT28
But my Goanimate password would be 9 letters x 4 = 36. So my password is PRiiTHT36

Going Further
Thats ok, but I'd like there to be a bit more of a difference, so I'll also use the last letter of each site.
Hotmail = PRiiHT28l
Goanimate = PRiiTHT36e

Final Thoughts
With this method, all I need to remember is my system and my favourite song or key sentence. Just remember to keep those private too. Don't go bragging about how awesome your password is and tell everyone!
What I like about this password is even if someone accidentally caught a glimpse of it, they would have a hard time trying to remember it. Not like Sunshine35!
Be sure to read the advice from the links below and try out your new password by visiting the Password Strength Checker link below.

Microsoft Safety and Security advice
Google Password Advice
Microsoft Password Strength Checker

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