What do the French former president Nikolas Sarkozy and actress Jennifer Lawrence have in common? Both are famous – and were hacked because their Password was not safe enough. How you can make it better in 5 easy steps …
With only one password being cracked, all of a sudden all your personal data can be freely available: You can imagine the disaster when explicit photos and fake social media posts of Sarkozy and Lawrence appeared on the net. However, hacking can not only hit celebrities, but also private individuals and companies. The lax approach to passwords has become a real Eldorado for criminals. So here are 5 basic rules your company should stick to be safe.
How to bake your perfect password …
1. It`s all about the right ingredients
Today, an average PC can process about 250 million combinations per second. An example: Imagine, how long it would take to guess the following password “ELCQaM53”, which consists of upper and lower case letters and digits … Only 2 hours! If you added special characters to the password, the computer could still guess it. But it would take a few more years for this task. So here comes our special Password Safe recipe to bake your highly complex password.
All it takes is a mixture of upper and lower case letters, a good portion of numbers, and special characters. Mix it up properly – et voilà! But what about quantities? The golden rule is: The longer the password and the more special characters and digits it contains, the more secure it becomes. Therefore, our kitchen strongly recommends a minimum length of 11 single letters per password.
2. Don’t spoil the dough
Words in a dictionary do not meet the criteria of a secure password, nor do their numerous variations or word creations, such as “Sk8erboy”. Also, avoid keyboard patterns, as password crackers have long been preprogrammed for this. “1qazxsw2 or “1234rfvcxz” will ruin your cake immediately. An absolute No-Go: Personal information in passwords such as your date of birth, the name of your pet, or your favorite movie.
3. Change is good
Imagine, you only had one key and you could use it to open your car, your front door, and even your locker. If someone could get his hands on this very key, he could gain access anywhere! Why are we telling you this? Because the same principle is often used when creating a password. Unfortunately, criminals also know that users like to use their passwords for multiple accounts. And if a hacker has now guessed the password of your e-mail account, he will also try to log on to other accesses with it. This can lead not only to an economic loss but also to a considerable image loss for private individuals and companies.
The solution to this problem is a piece of cake: Bake new for each account! Use a different, secure password for each account. This will make it more difficult for the attacker to do much damage.
4. Don`t forget the expiration date
Even the best cake tastes dull when served too often. And the longer passwords are in use, the greater the security risk. So change your passwords regularly and at fixed intervals – for example on the first working day of the new quarter. At the latest, when an employee leaves, all his passwords should be exchanged automatically in order to limit the human security risk as much as possible.
But we are not only talking about a different glaze but a completely new password! A password manager will be happy to do the work for you and reset your passwords at regular intervals.
5. The best kitchen tools: Password Managers
The mystery of password managers: Many people know them, but not everyone uses them. According to a recent study, 87.6% of the respondents know what a password manager is. However, only 22.3% of the respondents said they would use it in practice. Not every password manager is efficient, secure, and easy to use at the same time.
A modern password manager should provide sophisticated rights management, audit capabilities, and multi-level authentication. Which password manager can offer all this and even much more? Password Safe, the thermomix among password managers. Password Safe has been successful in the market for more than 20 years, being awarded several times since then. Top secure and Made in Germany, our Enterprise Management System meets the strict German regulations and stands out with its flexible application possibilities. The integrated password generator creates the most secure passwords at the push of a button. So while we take over your IT security, you can sit back and treat yourself to a piece of cake!
Learn more about the functions of Password Safe here.