Passwords are Fun? Well OK perhaps they are the bain of our lives but I came across a website recently that not only makes passwords fun for a few seconds but may also open your eyes a little to how easy it may be to crack your password.
The website http://howsecureismypassword.net/ is a fun look at how hard (or easy) it may be for your password to be cracked. Have a go, but before you do a word of warning, I do not know who is behind this website, and whether you should trust it with your real passwords. Being hyper sensitive when I tried it I offset my passwords on the keyboard and where I may have a word in my password I used a similar word of the same length. My passwords ranged from 2 years to 25 thousand years to crack.
So once you have had some fun, think about your password, what happens if you add one more character perhaps a symbol, my 2 year password changed to 6 thousand years just by adding a symbol to the front and back.
So, having had a play you now have an ultra secure password, what’s the next mistake you could make? That’s simple, use the same password on all your accounts! this is almost as big a no no as a simple password. Why? Consider you use your secure password to log into LinkedIn, and then LinkedIn’s server gets hacked and the passwords looted (BBC News). The hacker now has a source of secure and insecure passwords which they then use to attack other and perhaps financial type websites. It may mean trying millions of password/username variations but these hackers will be using thousands of computers to break the work down.
But now it’s getting hard, I have a complex password and it should be different for each website I log into. How can this be made simpler.
1. Consider making the password relevant to the website or its function. So lets use a hypothetical email website, I could use the password iliketoemail this calculates to 266 days.
2. Make it harder by adding capitals ILikeToEmail is 3 thousand years.
3. Perhaps add a symbol to the mix ILikeToE-Mail is 4 million years.
4. Perhaps use a longer sentence ‘I Like to email all my friends and relatives from Google Mail’ and then just use the first letter of each word and throw in some punctuation ?IlTeAmFaRfGm? calculates to 655 Million years.
So there you go hard to crack simple to remember. But if that is still too complicated you could look to a service such as LastPass.com, a secure service that creates, stores, and auto fills your passwords so you only need to remember one password to log into the main system.
Do you have a solution to this age old and increasing problem?
Have fun but be safe.