Dos and Don'ts of Passwords

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How do I make sure my password is secure?

Dos and Don'ts of Passwords

Here are some do's and don'ts when choosing a password. Information security demands that you choose a password that will be difficult to guess.
1. Don't use your login name in any form (as-is, reversed, capitalized, doubled, etc.).
2. Don't use your first or last name in any form. Don't use use your spouse's or child's name.
3. Don't use other information easily obtained about you. This includes license plate numbers, telephone numbers, social security numbers, the brand of your automobile, the name of the street you live on, etc.
4. Don't use a password of all digits, or all the same letter. This significantly decreases the search time for a cracker.
5. Don't use a word contained in English or foreign language dictionaries, spelling lists, or other lists of words. Don't use a password shorter than six characters.

1. Do use a password with mixed-case alphabetic characters.
2. Do use a password with nonalphabetic characters, e.g., digits or punctuation.
3. Do use a password that is easy to remember, so you don't have to write it down.
4. Do use a password that you can type quickly, without having to look at the keyboard.

This makes it harder for someone to steal your password by watching over your shoulder.



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