Using strong passwords is one of the 5 key recommendations NetSafe and the NZ Government recommend to protect yourself on-line.
- Don’t use obvious words or sequences. Use a mix of 15 letters, characters and symbols. 15 may be a bit long but it is easy to reach. We think you should aim for at least 12 characters.
- To make a strong password easily, join words together with symbols like ILIKE-2goRUNNING! Use pass phrases by joining words. Some examples are CoffeeLoverCatsRule
- Use different passwords and use a password manager to make this easy. I like Keepass and Lastpass as a password manager. You should never use the same password twice. if you must, use at least use a different password for your internet banking, email and online social networking accounts.
- Do not share your passwords, this can break the conditions set by your bank etc.
- Change your password regularly.
- Make sure you also protect your mobile phone with a password.
Using strong passwords is one of your best defences to protect yourself again cyber-security attacks and identify theft (think FaceBook). FaceBook holds private information about you so you should use a separate strong password/passphrase. Do this for all other sensitive or high security websites.
Use this online tool to test how strong your password is and how long it takes to crack.
Common password mistakes