Daily Dupaco

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Mum's the word when protecting your passwords

Tips to create a protect your accounts with strong passwordsWhen it comes to fighting identity theft, protecting your accounts with strong passwords is imperative.

“123456” simply won’t cut it.

But how do we keep track of those hard-to-crack protectors?

Steve Ervolino, Chief Information Officer at Dupaco Community Credit Union, has some advice:

Use strong-yet-easy-to-remember passwords. 

It really is possible, Ervolino says. Phrases are better than single words. For example, “Chicago” is a terrible password, especially if your Facebook page lists it as your favorite city. “Ch!c@g0” is better, but still fairly common. “Ch1cago !s lovelY” is easy to remember, difficult for someone to crack and has many options for modification when password-expiration time comes around. 

Don’t store your passwords.

While that’s the safest approach, it can be unrealistic, Ervolino acknowledges. If you must store them, never write them down. Instead, use a commercial-grade password manager that encrypts your passwords when they are stored and protects them with one complex master password. Choose a solution from a well-known company that has been reviewed by independent technology publications, and expect to pay $20 to $50 annually for the service. 

Use multiple passwords.

Do not use the exact same password for every website, especially financial-related sites such as Shine Online Banking. “It’s tempting and easier to do that, but if one site is compromised and they get your password, they now have access to all of your sites,” Ervolino says.

For more tips, check out Dupaco's Identity Theft Money Clips video.

By Emily Kittle

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