Thursday, 4 May 2017

It's World Password Day!

Secure, Complex, but Easy Passwords

4th May is World Password Day!

There are many different ideas on passwords; whether you should change them regularly; that you should have a different password for every website you visit and every app you use; how difficult to guess your password should be, (and therefore how hard to remember it is?)


One of the most sensible approaches to security is to use "complex" passwords of at least 8 characters, and to have a different password for each situation. A complex password is built up with at least 3 of the 4 elements of CAPITAL letters, lower-case letters, numb3rs and pun&tuat!on marks - such as P4ssw0rD!  Some websites like some punctuation, some don't. They will all accept the other 3 elements.

But, how can you easily create dozens of acceptable passwords, that are difficult to guess, and how would you ever remember several such passwords?

Here's a simple solution. 


Decide on a random word which will form the basis of all of your passwords. But that word shouldn't be a real word or name which is associated with you in any way, or able to be guessed. So, let's put that into practice.

At school I really liked a girl called Carol, (although I never dared tell her so!) So the basis of my randomly generated passwords shall be "arol". This isn't a real word and who would be able to guess it?

I'll now add 2 numbers, to the front and end of the base  - 1arol9

To make it unique, to each and every website or app that I use, I shall add the first 2 letters of the name of the company operating that website or app to the end of my new password in Capital Letters.

So, if I am dealing with Amazon, I would create the unique password of 1arol9AM
Ebay is given 1arol9EB
Marks and Spencer gets 1arol9MA
The IT Dept = 1arol9TH

I have quickly and simply created an infinite number of exceptionally strong passwords which are extremely memorable.



(4th May is also Star War's Day. May the Fourth be with you!)


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© Michael Donkin 2017