With so much business being conducted online, passwords are a modern day necessity.
Although passwords are designed to help keep information secure, if they are compromised they can give other people access to your accounts and business information and enable them to make transactions on your behalf.
So how do you ensure your information is safe and give yourself the best chance of avoiding unauthorised access to your accounts? Here are some suggestions on how to improve your password security and protect yourself and your business.
Use different passwords for each account
When you have multiple email accounts and other sites you log in to regularly, remembering a series of different passwords can be a challenge and you may find it easier to choose the same log in and password details for multiple accounts.
Having the same password for different uses may make it easier to remember but it also means that if one account is compromised, all your other accounts which use the same details can also be accessed.
Create secure passwords that aren’t easy to guess
There are a number of things you can do to ensure your passwords are as difficult to guess as possible. As well as avoiding obvious combinations such as your birthdate or sequential numbers, make sure they have a minimum of eight characters and try to include at least one non-alphanumeric character among them.
If you aren’t sure how strong your passwords are, the Microsoft password checker can be a useful tool. Type your chosen password into the box and it will tell you whether it is weak or strong based on a number of criteria including whether the password can be found in a dictionary and how many non-alphanumeric characters it contains.
One way to create a strong password is to think of a sentence and take the first letter from each word to use as your password. If you can add a number or other character in there, so much the better. This is an effective way to create strong passwords which are still easy for you to remember.
Use a password manager
To make it easier to remember multiple passwords you can use a password manager such as Keepass Password managers can keep all your passwords in one place so you never have to forget one again. Just make sure you don’t forget the password to your password manager!
Password protect your computers
Whenever you leave your machine make sure you lock it and if you use a public computer always log out and never allow the machine to remember your password or save it for future use.
Unauthorised access to your computer or online accounts can cause significant damage to your finances and your business and in many cases can prove stressful and time consuming to sort out.
Take password security seriously and you have a better chance of protecting your business from becoming a victim of cybercrime.