Password management or how not to lose your data
Do you have a bank account? Use the internet with your smartphone? Congratulations! Then you are on the brighter side of the power, where digital exclusion does not reach. But can you take care of the security of your data as effectively as you invite your friend for a beer via instant messenger?
Do you have one password? It’s like you don’t have any
Take a moment to think about how often you use your accounts on different websites. Try counting how many you have – you’ll probably lose count after a while.
- You make transfers online because it’s much more convenient than standing in a long line at the bank;
- you deal with the authorities using remote procedures;
- checking social media to see what’s going on with your friends and extended family (who you avoid like hell in real life);
- You have accounts at countless online stores;
- You use a virtual disk to store data.
All of this is just a fraction of the vast number of daily activities performed in the virtual world. A world in which you use your real identity. You can lose it easier than you think, especially if you don’t take proper care of your password security. All it takes is for a password from one service to fall into the hands of hackers, and they can use it to open many doors that you wouldn’t want to give them access to.
How to manage passwords effectively?
Ok. You already know what you are doing wrong, now it is time for you to learn some golden rules that will increase your online security. First of all, make a new password for each account. Do you have dozens of accounts on different sites? So you have a lot of work ahead of you.
Learn from others’ mistakes, don’t wait until you make them yourself
In 2017, there was a huge leak of login data. Logins and passwords to 10 million accounts from Polish domains fell into the hands of hackers. Do you know what’s most interesting? Among the most popular passwords there were such flowers:
You don’t have to be an online security expert to know that such passwords are not among the most secure and are very easy to crack.
So, what passwords can be considered secure? Certainly not the phrases that you can find in the dictionary. When creating passwords, do not use schemes. Use strings of random characters. Let them be numbers, letters and special characters. Don’t want to do it yourself? Use an automatic password generator.
Memory is fallible – choose a password manager
And here comes another problem. How to remember all the passwords? You’ve probably encountered more than once memes that featured a picture of a laptop with a piece of paper with login information taped to the monitor. Don’t go that way! A handy notebook with passwords or a file in a spreadsheet are also not very effective solutions.
Don’t worry, you won’t have to forge those passwords on a sheet of paper. Password managers will come to your aid. You can find at least a few programs on the web that are trustworthy and not at all complicated to use. You can choose tools such as KeePass, LastPass or BitWarden.
Log in to services with your Google or Facebook accounts and remember about two-factor login authentication
Do you want to increase your online security, but at the same time do not want to increase the number of passwords and logins that could get into the wrong hands? You can take advantage of the functionality of many websites and use your existing Google or Facebook account to log in.
And how do you make your Facebook or Google login information more secure? There is a method for this – two-factor authentication. You will have to confirm your login request in an alternative way, e.g. by entering a code received by SMS or by using Google Authenticator application.
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