Another one bites the dust. The January 2018 healthcare data breach was one of 21 security breaches (down vs the 39 incidents in December 2017). And that’s just healthcare. Consider the compromises reported by retail, education, and utility companies. It’s a dizzying hack. Social media accounts continue to be under attack. And at times keeping up feels like playing a game of whac-a-mole.
Pass The Password
Then there is the blatant password sharing with friends, giving access to streaming accounts such as Hulu or Netflix. While boomers struggle to protect and keep track, younger adults put little care into password hygiene. Use of biometrics, multi-factor authentication, and password managers help to improve their personal security. Still, it is important to set and update passwords regularly—not just on the annual Change Your Password Day every February 1st.
Protect Your Password
To ensure your accounts remain secure, it is critical to update them often. And, tracking passwords must be done in a way to protect your information. So, what do you do to keep passwords updated? And how do you remember them? We asked and found some fun ways to create meaningful passwords that come to mind and are at your fingertips when your fingerprint isn’t enough to access your account.
Personal Password Prompts
Sassy Saying: If there is something you hear all the time and it rings in your ears, it is likely to be recalled when you need it. Just twist up things with capital letters and special characters. One listener reported using holy cow and can translate this in many ways: h0lyc0w! H0LYc0w and more depending on what is required. Most sites insist on a minimum of six to eight characters.
Name Your Tune: A favorite lyric or song title can ring a bell with you when signing in to your account. One member reports using ScHoolboy Q rap songs to inspire passwords, adding special characters for effect: that’sB!TCHs4It or thAtsb!tch$h!t and for variation.
Dash It: Including a dash as your special character to separate things is an option that adds variation and identification. For instance, IG-Make100k and FB-Make100k is a way to update your password regularly and reuse your monthly or quarterly password root across platforms.
Acronyms: There are many ways to incorporate acronyms that can make your password more personalized and secure. FRFR2million$ is a favorite for a fan who insists that she will be making 2 million dollars, for real for real.
Jargon: Almost every industry has terms that specific to what you do. For insistence, my colleague is a project manager and uses scrumMA$TER12 since there are a total of 12 on the scrum team pulling together the product.
Inside Jokes: How many times do you get to share a sideways glance with your bestie because you have a spin on whatever is happening. It’s something you share and no one else knows. An example is this witty ditty shared between two friends who can really make each other laugh… so, #0utURnose.
Mantras: For those who are mindful, a mantra can be a clever way to create your password and remind you of your meditation. An example for this might be n@m@st3.
Slogans: Like a mantra, slogans are statements repeated frequently. There are phrases too, such as this password possibility: $0RRYnotSOrry or NetFL!X&ch!LL
Favorite Foods: What do you love to eat? There are many password angles on your plate. It can range from your overall diet, such as KeTo-TaRiaN, to a beverage, such as k0mbuch@, to an actual entree, such as R@M3Nburger. Mash up your favorite cuisine for a password that will make you drool.
Gibberish: Nonsensical words can make sense as passwords. There are fun ways to create them with online generator tools such as this one by soybomb that spit out this gem: blastucked. It rolled into a password combination that was fun and into a term used among friends after that bottle of wine.
Play with Passwords
There are many other inspirations for passwords. And, you still have to remember what variation you used and where. My personal favorite is to use dashes and mash up a few for my own strong password. It helps to add other layers of security to your most precious accounts. And, if you’ve gotta do this, you might as well make it interesting. What are some of your password tips?