Strong passwords are one of the hardest parts of internet security. If you make it too strong, it’s going to be hard to remember. If you make it too easy, someone could easily penetrate your site. You finally get something with letters, numbers, capitals, and symbols, so you keep it forever. You write it down or set your browser to remember it and then never think about it.
That is until your website gets compromised. Someone manages to log-in, and change information, and put information out there that isn’t yours. Now what? You have a lot of clean up and repair to do.
It would have been better to set a strong password from the start.
Since we provide website hosting, we have taken a lot of security precautions on our end. We are updating and maintaining the security framework of your site. We don’t use the “admin” username on any site – as it is the most hack-able username for a website. We have also put in strong passwords for ourselves based on the advice below.
As one of our clients, we encourage you to set up strong passwords for your accounts online – especially your website, email, banking, and anything else that has to do with your business.
Check out these suggestions. The more tips you use, the stronger your password will be.
First, here are some things you should NOT do:
Avoid using common passwords – password, love, money, qwerty, 1234, etc. Also avoid using the names of your children, pets, your address, birthdays, or combinations of these things would be easy for someone you know to guess.
Don’t just turn a common word backwards (i.e. drowssap) or just put numbers or symbols in for look alike letters (i.e. p@assword).
Avoid using keystrokes in order (i.e. 1234, qwert, !@#$) at the beginning or end of the password just because you have to include them.
Don’t write it down. (If you need help remembering passwords for your sites, we will suggest some free services to help with this.)
Don’t use the same password for every site (we’ll give some great hints for ways to help remember these passwords).
Now, for what you SHOULD do:
The more characters you use, the stronger a password is. 8 characters is a normal minimum for a password requirement. 12 to 16 characters is better. Use capitals – and not just at the beginning – along with lowercase letters. And put numbers in – but in the middle.
After these basic steps, you can add more strength by adding symbols to your password like !@#$%^&*
With all of those things being said, I know you will have a hard time remembering the password – especially when they are different for each site. We suggest coming up with a passphrase and altering it based on all of the above advice – even some of the don’ts!
For example, you could take your favorite food. (i.e. ilovebacon) and by adding spaces (i.e. i love bacon) you’ve already added symbols. But you can make it even stronger!
First you can use the word “eye” in place of the “i”. Now you have “eye love bacon”.
Next, pick some letters to replace with numbers or symbols. Go from “eye love bacon” to “eye lov3 b@con”.
Now, pick one or two of the words to capitalize. How about “EYE lov3 B@CON”.
You could even turn one word backwards and have “EYE lov3 NOC@B”
And there you have a strong password that is easy to remember.
But what about the part where I mentioned not using the exact same password for all of your online accounts? Well, you can add to the password for each site. It could be as easy as adding the first 3 letters of the site to the beginning of your new password. We just suggest separating this with a symbol.
For your email, you could have “ema*EYE lov3 NOC@B”.
For your website, your could have “web*EYE lov3 NOC@B”.
And there you have it. It takes time to change all of the passwords you currently have. But it is so worth it on the security end. And frankly, we think it’s a lot easier to remember than if you used these numbers or those numbers on any given site. You will always have a base to go.
We also suggest changing passwords every 6 months. If you are one of those people who likes to do things with the time change (like changing your smoke detector batteries), just add online passwords to the list. Or your birthday and half birthday. Whatever is easy for you to remember and do, do it! Online security is no joke!
If you need some help with remembering all of your different passwords, we suggest to NOT let them be saved in your browser – all of the browsers offers this feature these days, but if your computer is stolen, someone else has ALL of your passwords just ready to go. Instead we recommend a free download like LastPass which will remember the password for each site. Then all you have to remember is your LastPass password, which you can change if your computer is lost or stolen. Using the easy tricks from above, you’ll never forget those passwords.
And how do you change your password on your WordPress website? Just follow the tutorial below! If we have built a custom website for you please reach out to us and we can get it changed for you.
Change Password in WordPress Website
Log-in to your website with your current username and password.
Scroll down the page until you see “New Password”. You will have to type the same password twice. The Strength Indicator will let you know if your password is strong enough (but if you followed the procedures above, you shouldn’t have any problems). It will also let you know that your passwords match – which is necessary to complete the change.
We really hope this helped you understand more about internet and website security, as well as password strength importance. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you might have on password strength.