Password Best Practices

by Damian Stalls Updated Sep 28, 2019

Creating a strong password is an essential step to protecting yourself online. Using long and complex passwords is one of the easiest ways to defend yourself from cybercrime. No citizen is immune to cyber risk, but #BeCyberSmart and you can minimize your chances of an incident.

Simple Tips for a Secure Password

Creating a strong password is easier than you think. Follow these simple tips to shake up your password protocol:

Use a long passphrase

According to NIST guidance, you should consider using the longest password or passphrase permissible. For example, you can use a passphrase such as a news headline or even the title of the last book you read. Then add in some punctuation and capitalization.

Don't make passwords easy to guess

Do not include personal information in your password such as your name or pets’ names. This information is often easy to find on social media, making it easier for cybercriminals to hack your accounts.

Avoid using common words in your password

Substitute letters with numbers and punctuation marks or symbols. For example, @ can replace the letter “A” and an exclamation point (!) can replace the letters “I” or “L.”

Get creative

Use phonetic replacements, such as “PH” instead of “F”. Or make deliberate, but obvious misspellings, such as “enjin” instead of “engine.”

Keep your passwords on the down-low

Don’t tell anyone your passwords and watch for attackers trying to trick you into revealing your passwords through email or calls. Every time you share or reuse a password, it chips away at your security by opening up more avenues in which it could be misused or stolen.

Unique account, unique password

Having different passwords for various accounts helps prevent cyber criminals from gaining access to these accounts and protect you in the event of a breach. It’s important to mix things up—find easy-to remember ways to customize your standard password for different sites.

Double your login protection

Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) to ensure that the only person who has access to your account is you. Use it for email, banking, social media, and any other service that requires logging in. If MFA is an option, enable it by using a trusted mobile device, such as your smart phone, an authenticator app, or a secure token—a small physical device that can hook onto your key ring. Read the Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) How-to-Guide for more information.

We have recently partnered with DUO for MFA security.  Let us know if you would like information on pricing and how to setup for your company.

Utilize a password manager to remember all your long passwords

The most secure way to store all of your unique passwords is by using a password manager. With just one master password, a computer can generate and retrieve passwords for every account that you have – protecting your online information, including credit card numbers and their three-digit Card Verification Value (CVV) codes, answers to security questions, and more.

We recommend using either LastPass or Dashlane to secure your passwords.  We can also provide this service as well using our MyGlue platform.  Customers with an AISP Support Agreement can use MyGlue at no additional charge.  Talk to your account manager today!

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