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Password Dos and Don’ts

 

A strong password is important. Hackers use sophisticated tools that can rapidly guess passwords that are based on words in the dictionary, in a variety of languages, and even words spelled backwards.

So what makes a password strong?


Strong passwords should:

  • be easy for you to remember and type, but difficult for others to guess
  • be at least eight (8) characters in length
  • appear to be a random string of characters

Weak passwords use this kind of easy-to-discover information:

  • Your login name
  • Your children’s/spouse’s/pet’s name(s)
  • Your birthday
  • Your phone number
  • Other common information about yourself or your family that could be easily known or guessed
  • Dictionary-based words (in any language)
  • Dictionary-based words or common words/names with numbers (before and/or after) like “snoopy23”
  • Sequential repeating combinations, such as “12345678,” “555555,” “abcdefg,” “QWERTY,” etc.
  • Common words with letters replaced by numbers or symbols, such as “M1cr0$oft,” “P@ssw0rd,” etc.


Download this document for later reference: How to Create a Strong Password (PDF - 52KB)