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Security Best Practices: Passwords

Article ID: 676

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Hackers are able to obtain or guess passwords frequently because frankly, people quite often make it easy for them.  Don't make their job easy for them... follow these guidelines:
  • Passwords should be sufficiently complex. 
    • at least 8 characters total, more is better.
    • includes uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers AND symbols
    • an example would be: 7i8#4]gM
  • Change your passwords regularly.  The longer you have the same password, the longer a hacker can utilize brute-force guessing techniques to identify what it is.
  • Don't store passwords on your computer in unencrypted files.  It's common for malware writers to have their worms or viruses to check your system for files called "mypasswords.txt" or "pwords.doc"... why?  because it's common for computer users to store their infromation in files like this. 
  • Review Microsoft's excellent article on strategies for passwords:
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