Consider this blog post a public-service announcement directed at you, your business, and your personal affairs. If any of the passwords to your social media accounts, website backends, entertainment systems or bank accounts are weak, now is the best time to beef them up.
Earlier this month, business magazine Fast Company published an article about password recycling and how people often reuse their passwords for multiple accounts. “A 2017 report by the Pew Research Center, for instance, found that 39% of Americans admitted to extensive password recycling.” Guilty of this, too? Or is your password weak?
We went ahead and asked Flow head of digital Richard Frank about the best way to quickly beef up your password strength.
“One of the easiest and best things you can do for yourself is to change to a stronger password,” says Richard. He recommends that you test your password strength using the How Secure Is My Password online tool.
The site tells you how quickly a computer could crack your password. For example, if a password was 123, a computer would take around 25 nanoseconds to figure it out. However, if a password was AvengersAssemble123#, a computer would take 43-quintillion years to figure it out. Nifty tool, we think!
“Password length and the use of special characters are major factors,” says Richard. “So, at Flow, we often use a combination of words, symbols and numbers in our passwords. The result is passwords that are hard to crack, but still easy to remember.”
Another top tip from Richard is that you should not use your name or your brand name in passwords either.
“Using a foreign word also makes it very difficult for hackers to use ‘dictionary’ attacks, so any South African language other than English is awesome for passwords!”