Passwords for Dummies

Change your Passwords. It’s vitally important.

10/05/2019 – Toni Dines

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) reported that more that 3.5 Million individuals in the United Kingdom use the word “Password” as their password. That’s unbelievable. What’s even more shocking? On this digital planet of ours, over 20 Million people use “12345” as a ‘secure’ password for their banking, accounts and log-in details when prompted.

These are quite simply alarming and frightening passwords that users are using within businesses to protect vital, important and sensitive data that has significant importance for the integrity, reputation and financial success of any business in the United Kingdom.

Here are some tips to ensure that your Passwords are changed regularly, randomly created and protected in the most effective ways available to your business. Passwords are often the single and only barrier between a hacker obtaining your private information and sensitive data they require for criminal activity.

Ensure that your passwords are idiot proof;

Companies like Norton and Avast offer effective tools for generating passwords that are completely random and near on impossible to identify or link to you as an individual, within any business. also reported significant failings of businesses big and small creating effective passwords as they were not randomly generated. The best passwords are not often as complex as you would imagine, therefore making selecting and securing them a must for any user. A useful tip from National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) suggests that you use three random words, strung together and ensure that the length is as long as possible (where possible).

The longer it is the harder it will be for a hacker to breach your data by guessing the password.

Using the same password, everywhere?

This is a major flaw in approach to password protection and integrity across the globe. Simply put, if you use the same password for all of your banking, accounts, emails and usernames- what’s stopping hackers from testing the same password across all of your accounts?

Hackers will simply take your password and known email to attempt to steal your data, steal your identity and finances just by visiting popular websites and platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Ebay.

Writing down your passwords?

Don’t. With so many innovate, encrypted and secure data storage applications and systems, it’s easy to obtain a good password manager to retain your various passwords. Just ensure one thing- the application or system that you use encrypts your passwords using strong cryptographic methodologies and of course in a trusted and recognised way.

Password sorted, what is next?

To add a secondary layer of authentication to your password security, where possible always entrust a two-factor authentication layer of security for log in details for any system. This is also known as 2FA. Known organisations that have successfully embedded 2FA into their user base are the likes of Microsoft, and also Apple Technologies.

As a business, we can consult in the best 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th lines of defence from a 360-degree perspective within any business or organisation, get in touch.