Today marks World Password Day 2019! Businesses and consumers around the globe are celebrating today by helping share awareness and resources to benefit internet users and improve their password security. Although some reports are calling for the end of passwords in the future, we believe these security tools will be around for a much longer time, and as such, everyone must treat their password security like the keys to their own home.
A major problem plaguing many unsuspecting users is their passwords might have already been compromised in one of the many data breach collections currently existing on the internet. As a result of many users choosing the same exact passwords for many of their online accounts, it’s more likely to have your password compromised in one of these “collections” released online by cyber criminals. Online services such as HaveIBeenPwned are an excellent resource to help users research if their accounts have been breached in previous incidents. You might be surprised to find an account you created almost 10 years ago could have been leaked online!
Proven Data’s Tips for Better Passwords
Choose Unique & Complex Passwords
It’s alarming how many users still create weak & insecure passwords by choosing familiar subjects such as their dog’s name or alma-mater. With the increased use in social media, it’s now easier than ever for a cyber thief to go online and examine you background, guessing your passwords along the way. Creating more complex and dynamic passwords can help keep your online accounts safe from unwanted access. Ian M, Principal Technical Director of the National Cyber Security Centre, suggests the “Three Random Words” technique: creating a short sentence via a combination of three well-chosen words and numbers provides more account protection and can be easier for the user to remember. (Example: 13NJ0YBl4CKC0FFE3) “I Enjoy Black Coffee”
Use A Password Manager
Utilizing a password manager can be a huge asset in helping users securely store all of their quality passwords with a trusted, encrypted service. Password managers are designed to keep track of users’ passwords under a master account which is installed via an extension to your internet browser (Chrome) or an app on a mobile device (Android & iOS). Popular services such as LastPass can make it easier to store passwords while not having the burden to remember each and every login for your account. From a security perspective, this can enable a user to really ensure they are creating more complex passwords without having to repeat or reuse across any other account. Many large-scale corporations and businesses are moving to password managers, and it’s becoming more attractive for consumers, too!
Enable Two-Factor Authentication
Security features such as two-factor authentication can add another layer of security on top of your password already in use. Two-Factor Authentication (better known as 2FA) ensures better account security by requiring the login process to use a password and an additional form of access such as an authenticator code or device (such as a mobile device, etc). Enabling 2FA for your email, online banking, and social media is a great way to get started on the path to better account security. We even recommend buying a physical security key such as the YubiKey which serves as a tangible security authentication format which you can take with you everywhere!
 Microsoft’s security chief explains why the company is eliminating passwords, CNBC, https://www.cnbc.com/2019/05/01/microsoft-ciso-bret-arsenault-wants-to-eliminate-passwords.html
 Have I Been Pwned, https://haveibeenpwned.com/
 LastPass, https://www.lastpass.com/hp
 Every Business Needs Two-Factor Authentication, Proven Data Blog https://www.provendatarecovery.com/blog/every-business-needs-two-factor-authentication/