Safety & Security

May 3 was World Password Day – secure yours with 5 easy tips

Keep passwords strong, safe and out of sight

Your bank account. Your IRS tax profile. Your medical records. In our connected society, a strong password can be the only thing standing between hackers and your most sensitive information.

Take a stand this World Password Day! Keep yourself safe with our pro tips:

Get two steps ahead with two-factor authentication

With information so nice, you should protect it twice. Wherever possible, sign up for two-factor or multi-factor authentication.

This additional layer of protection requires you not only enter a password to log into an account, but also complete an additional step using your phone, email or other verification method that only you should have access to. That way, if hackers obtain your password, you’re still protected.

Don’t write down passwords

You wouldn’t leave the keys to your home just lying around in public. Don’t leave passwords out in the open, either. If you must write down your password, treat it like cash: Keep it in your wallet or purse.

Don’t share passwords

And don’t let other people use your accounts, even friends or co-workers. If you suspect your credentials for a website or company have been lost or compromised, report it to the company immediately and take steps to change your password.

Consider using a password manager

For optimum security, you shouldn’t use the same password on multiple sites — that way, if there’s a data breach on one, your information is still secure on the others. If you find all those passwords hard to remember, consider using a free password manager app, which can store your many complex passwords with ease.

Use strong passwords or passphrases

Create passwords that are hard to guess, and use a combination of capital and lowercase letters, numbers and special characters.

Get added safety by using a longer passphrase like “The-Texas-2-Step” rather than a shorter password like “tT2S2017.”

Think you’ve got a great password strategy? Test out a sample password using the Gibson Research Corporation’s password tool (remember not to use your real password).

Get more tips and learn how PEC keeps you and your information safe online »