Perfect time to change your passwords
It’s a perfect time to change your passwords to stronger ones. Passwords work like a key to important personal information, such as name, birth date, home address, phone number and credit card information. Criminals can use personal information for identity theft. Because the personal information in your profiles is protected by passwords, password security is important.
However, not everyone pays attention to password security. Surprisingly many people use simple passwords, such as “password”, “123456”, “qwerty” etc. Additionally, most people use the same passwords on multiple accounts. Both using simple passwords and reusing them are bad for security. Here are 3 reasons to change your passwords to stronger ones.
1. Passwords are keys to your personal information online
Used with an email address or username, passwords are the key to your user accounts. No surprise there. But have you considered that user accounts include sensitive personal information? Many services across the internet require us to fill personal information in order to function. Of course, you could always give false information. But in case of, for example, a shopping app, you have to include the correct details.
If hackers get to know the email and password combination you use to access your profile, they get access to all the personal information in that profile.
2. You are not the only one in control of your passwords
Probably no other person knows your password. But it is saved in the database of the web service you use. You can protect your information on your own device with security measures such as antivirus and VPN. However, protecting user accounts in internet services are beyond your control.
There is nothing a single user can do to prevent services from getting breached. No matter how careful you are, if a service you use gets breached, your information gets compromised. And there are new breaches all the time.
3. A reused password endangers other profiles as well
Most people reuse passwords in multiple profiles. In case a hacker gets your password, they will most likely try it on other popular services. Typically, hackers try to access profiles in which people include credit card details, such as Amazon, eBay, Netflix etc.
If you reuse passwords, a seemingly trivial profile getting breached is no joke. Using unique and strong random passwords on every profile limits the damage of a breach only to the breached account.
Using a unique password saves time when you need to change your password
After a breach you will have to change your password to secure your account. When you use unique passwords, you will need to change only the password of a breached account. If you used the same password on other accounts, you would have to change the password for every other account.
It takes a lot of time to change all passwords. During that time your accounts can be taken over. Criminals will always try to use stolen personal information as fast as possible to gain benefits. After a breach, time is of essence.
What makes a strong password?
First rule is, do not use the same password on any other account. Whatever password you have, use it only on one account.
A good password is hard to guess. You can form one using long sentences, obscure strings of characters and numbers. The point is that anyone trying to get through the security can’t do it by just guessing the password. And it’s not that criminals are just typing in passwords to get through. They use sophisticated programs, that can test billions of passwords – in a second. Many people use the names of their children or pets as passwords. Sometimes this information can be snooped from social media.
The strongest passwords are the ones even you can’t remember. Password managers help you store your strong random passwords. When using a password manager, you only have to remember one password to access all the others. With a password manager you won’t forget your passwords.
Other things you can do to secure your accounts
For an additional layer of security, enable two-factor authentication whenever possible. Even if your strong password gets compromised in a breach, criminals will have to get through another barrier. Meanwhile you have time to change your password.
It’s also a good idea to check if your accounts and passwords have already been included in a security breach. Use F-Secure Identity Theft Checker for a free and safe check.
F-Secure ID PROTECTION is a highly sophisticated password manager
F-Secure ID PROTECTION is an easy-to-use password manager, which helps you secure your passwords and protect your personal information online. It monitors your personal information 24/7 and sends you data breach alerts. Whenever a breach with your information has been detected, you will be the first to know.
You can try it for free for 5 days completely on us, with no credit card required.