Cyber security can sound complex and terrifying and seem like something only experts can handle and indeed it can be all of those things. However, there are many simple measures that you can take that to greatly enhance your security. The foundation for all cyber security, the password, is often overlooked. There is an argument that passwords may become obsolete but their usefulness ensures they will be around for a long time to come yet.
One of the main ways cyber criminals work to hack via password security is through brute force attacks. This is basically the use of an automated system to continually guess at passwords until it hits on a correct one. Having a secure password is imperative, it only takes a breach at this simple level to allow hackers entry to your entire system and all your data.
Follow these simple steps to return the power to your passwords.
1. Unique Passwords
If your password is a word that occurs in the dictionary you need to change it! Passwords should be multi character, involving numbers, punctuation and letters. Gone are the days of using your spouse’s name or your child’s birthdate as a secure password. Try thinking of a sentence, or a line from a song and then using the first letter of each word from that sentence, broken up with numbers and punctuation to create a secure password. Passwords need to be a minimum of 8 characters.
2. Different Passwords
Use a different password for every account you have and every online service you use. If you are using passwords correctly, then you won’t be able to remember them all so you will need to use a password keeper. Password keepers are readily available in app form on your smartphone. (The password to your password keeper needs to be particularly secure). Using the same password for more than one account just opens the way for criminals to access even more of your information, the more you repeat a password the weaker it becomes.
3. Secret Passwords
Some things are best kept secret and your passwords are one of them. Sadly, too many businesses share passwords amongst their staff. Using shared passwords just increases the access a cyber-criminal would have once the password has been leaked/hacked.
4. Change you Passwords
Many of us are in the habit of changing our passwords but it cannot be done too frequently. Even once a month may not be enough as automated brute force attacks may find the password within that time frame.
5. Two/Three factor authentication
Passwords by nature are inherently insecure but they are also imperative as they can be used anywhere on any device and the user doesn’t need to have remembered an authentication token. The best way to ensure the security of your system is to use more than just a password, using two factor or even three factor authentication is definitely the way forward to a securer future.
6. Password Generator
For help with creating secure administrative password use a password generator such as DirectPass to create a unique, more secure password that has no link to your personal data which always increases ‘guessability’.
7. General web security
Keep malware off your computer and therefore increase the safety of your passwords and computer by observing proper web security. Don’t click on pop ups or links from unknown senders, don’t download attachments from unknown senders and never give your personal details or password away unless you are certain the website is secure or the link you are using is legitimate.
Here at DigitalXRaid we’re extremely passionate about security and consider the services we offer are the best in the business. To talk to us about your business cyber security, do please contact us.