So long as there is technology, data breaches are here to stay. As technology evolves, so will the sophistication of cyber attacks. These breaches don't just affect you and your business. In fact, one of the greatest risks to global economic stability is cyberattacks.
A data breach is a leak of sensitive or confidential information, whether intentional or unintentional. It is almost a guarantee that at least one of your passwords, past or present, has been exposed by a data breach.
When passwords are exposed, hackers can buy them for a small sum, giving them unlimited access to your accounts and sensitive information. And, if you’ve used that password for multiple online accounts, bad guys could access those accounts too. So, if you’re still using your old MySpace password for your Facebook account, change that password immediately!
Here are some tips to keep in mind when creating new passwords:
Make Your Passwords Complex
Complex passwords use at least eight characters with a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols.
Passphrases are a phrase or sentence. Don’t use the lyrics of your favorite song or a quote from a book! Make it unique but make it something you can remember.
Example: Instead of using "PasswordSafetyIsCool" consider using only the first and last letters of each word with letters and symbols mixed in to make "^pD%sy*/iS_@2cL%!"
Use a password generator
Password creators such as LastPass and 1Password can generate passwords for you.
Don’t use variations of your old passwords
Hackers know that untrained users will do this, so they use automated tools to figure out these variations.
As a simple example, if your password is “Password”, don’t make it “Password1”. Hopefully, none of your passwords are actually “Password”!
Whether or not you’re sure that your password has been exposed, make the safe choice and make all of your passwords unique. Not sure how to keep track of all of these unique passwords? Ask your IT team or supervisor if they can recommend a password or credential manager that you can use.
Stop, Look, and Think. Don't be fooled.
The KnowBe4 Security Team and LMT Technology Solutions