Just like a key, everything hinges on a password. Think about this for a moment. What if someone had access to to your email account, online bank account, FTP password?… yeah it’s enough to make anyone who cares straighten up and get tense. While nothing is 100% secure, there are things you can do to minimize the horror of getting hacked.
To begin with NEVER elect to “Automatically Sign In” when logging into your Gmail, Google Apps account or any web site for that matter. The few seconds it takes to type in your user name and password is great insurance in the event someone gains access to your computer.
The next recommendation is to create a password scheme. For example, use 4 numbers, perhaps your month and the year you were born. Then perhaps your first name alternating between upper and lower case letters, then 01, 02, 03, 04.
If John was born February 2, 1964 then a good password would be 0264JoHn followed by 01, 02, 03, 04 (0264JoHn01). The last two digits would represent the time of the year, in this case, which quarter of the year. If it’s March, then the last 2 digits would be 02. If the current month is November, then 04. This password scheme works well because it also forces you to change your passwords at least 4 times a year based on the time of year or quarter.
This same scheme could also be used for passwords on certain web sites. For example, if you visit CNN.com often and you need to create a password for their web site, then consider using the first 3 letters of their domain name in conjunction with the scheme you just learned (cnn0264JoHn) and possibly forgo the last two digits. If the web site was Walmart, then wal0264JoHn. This ensures that every password for almost every web site you visit is unique and easy for you to remember.
Feel free to create your own password scheme to help you easily recall your password but make it difficult enough that it would be impossible to guess. Never use the same password for everything! Never use the same password for everything! Never use the same password for everything! Do I need to repeat that again? Good.
Any web site which has access to personal information such as banks or email accounts, should use a scheme forcing you to change your password each quarter.
Using “bosco” as your password is not advisable. Sorry Seinfeld lovers, that was just too tempting not to throw that in.
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