Thursday, February 28, 2013

What Makes a Strong Password

Generally speaking, a strong password is a combination of alphanumeric and special characters
that is easy for you to remember and difficult for someone else to guess. Unfortunately, many users try to make things easy on themselves and choose passwords that are easy to guess. Let’s
look at some characteristics of strong passwords.
Minimum Length
Strong passwords should be at least eight characters, if not more. They shouldn’t be any longer
than 15 characters so that they are easy to remember. You need to specify a minimum length for passwords because a short password is easily cracked.
The Weak List
Here are some passwords that you should never use:
The word password, Proper names, Your pet’s name, Your spouse’s name, Your children’s names, any word in the dictionary, A license plate number, Birth dates, Anniversary dates, Your username, The word server, Any text or label on the PC or monitor
There are others, but these are the most commonly used weak passwords.
Using Characters to Make a Strong Password
Difficult-to-crack passwords do not have to be difficult to remember, and they should include
a combination of numbers, letters, and special characters (not just letters, not just numbers, not
just special characters, but a combination of all three). Special characters are those that cannot
be considered letters or numbers (for example, $ % ^ # @). An example of a strong password
is tqbf4#jotld. Such a password may look hard to remember, but it is not. You may remember
the following sentence, which uses every letter in the English alphabet: The quick brown fox
jumped over the lazy dog. Take the first letter of each word, put the number 4 and a pound (#)
symbol in the middle, and you have a strong password.

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