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How to Create Strong Passwords

Use this guide to help create strong passwords because sometimes adding 1 and ! isn’t enough!

Use entire phrases over single words
Hackers will perform dictionary attacks on systems they wish to gain access to, by avoiding using one singular word you can easily double the security of your password. For example instead of using ‘Roundabout’, use ‘Goaroundtheroundabout’. Not only does this lengthen the password but it also makes it so much more complex and thus much harder to crack.

Use special characters for a purpose
Most services these days will request a ‘special character’ to be used, whether it’s !, £, <, ? or +, most of us will plonk one of these at the end in order to meet the requirements. Hackers know this, but how can you fit one of these random characters into your password but it still remain memorable to you? Use them for their intended purpose! Trying using an equation, like ‘tenplus4=14” – the combination of different types of characters, combined with the placing of letters, numbers and characters throughout will throw the hacker off any scent.

Size matters
The more characters, the better. Even a simple password such as ‘myfavouritecolourisgreen’ which contains a personal detail, no capitals, numbers or characters will be more complex to hack than a shorter , ‘Green1!’. Of course ‘My+fav0r1TE-COLOURi5Gr33n+!’ would be the best of both worlds, but good luck remembering that one!

Don’t use the dictionary
As mentioned before, hackers will perform dictionary attacks. A great way to create a really secure password is to use words that either don’t exist in the English language, or don’t exist in any language at all. Time to get creative!

Don’t use your own details
Your name, hometown, place of work and all the things you like are often readily available on social networking sites, comments on blogs etc. Even with the highest security settings on Facebook employed, the information is still out there and you have no control of your friend’s security settings.

Tell a white lie
As long as you’re consistent then tell a little white lie when asked the classic ‘what’s your mother’s maiden name’ or ‘what was the name of your first pet’. Again this information is probably easily sourced online somewhere, and the hackers know exactly where to head first, so trick them by telling a little white lie. Just make sure you remember!

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