Captain Info-Tech Tips – Creating Memorable Longer Passwords
Do you have a problem coming up with original security passwords that are both complex enough to outsmart cyber-pirates and yet be memorable?
“Person, Woman, Man, Camera, Tv” – The 45th President of the United States of America. People are great at memorizing random words; we naturally make up little stories in our minds linking the words together. In the above infamous example, we can imagine a Man and Woman sitting in front of the TV watching a show filmed on Cameras. Why then is it so hard to remember our passwords?
Years of practice making hard passwords taught us to add symbols and numbers, did I put a 1 at the end? Was it a $ or a & last time I had to reset? Because passwords are hard to remember we sometimes make them short or too simple.
Here’s an interesting example. Which of these two passwords is easier to remember?
Sol4rW1nd$123 or Person-Woman-Man-Camera-Tv-45?
And which password do you think would be harder to crack?
A longer password with 5 random words which contains capitalizations, a few special characters (ex. #@?*) and at least 1 number is harder to crack than say your dog’s name or first address. This is because of the exponential cost of guessing each additional character – even though we’re using dictionary words. It would take about 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 times longer to work your way by brute force through the longer password in this example (Person-Woman-Man-Camera-Tv-45), and the first password (Person-Woman-Man-Camera-Tv-45) was no slouch.
When you can’t use a password manager, consider using a set of 5 random words separated by your favourite special character (!@#$%^&*) and a number or two thrown in. It doesn’t work if the words are related to each other, so don’t start listing out your pets and children’s names, and I/Hate/Password/Security/Newsletters/99 won’t work either.
For a handy tool to generate these types of passwords, check out https://correcthorsebatterystaple.net/. Like all passwords, these aren’t 100% bulletproof and must still be changed regularly, and please, don’t use Person-Woman-Man-Camera-Tv-45, I’m using it on my (smart) luggage.
I hope you found these tips helpful. if you did, please share. Cyber-security is in the news these days because the bad guys have gotten very clever at breaching our security fortifications.
∼ Alex Leibner, i24 Call Management Solutions