When we tell you that it’s a best practice to implement complex passwords for your business, do you know what exactly a complex password is? The truth of the matter is that secure passwords are a little confusing, and the standards continue to shift back and forth. Let’s examine some of the industry-standard best practices for implementing secure passwords and how your organization can go about doing so.
Password Best Practices
For a quick reference of password best practices, please review the following list:
- Don’t use the same password twice: When you use a password for multiple accounts, you are effectively putting all of your accounts at risk. If one of them is stolen, then all of them are stolen. It might be difficult to remember all of these passwords, but it’s the most secure way to handle your passwords–especially with a password management solution.
- Make passwords easy to remember but hard to guess: One way you can make a password easy to remember but hard to guess is by using a “passphrase” of sorts. For example, rather than using your cat’s name–let’s say he is named Steve. You can use something like “mycatsnameissteveandheissassy,” which is obviously much more difficult for a hacker to guess.
- Prioritize length rather than complexity: On that note, complexity is important, but so is making your password long. Simply put, if your password is long, it’s harder for hackers to guess. You should still use letters, numbers, and symbols whenever possible.
Augment Your Best Practices with Security Solutions
The best password practice is to rely on more than just passwords; you should also implement password management tools and multi-factor authentication to augment your security. Password management tools let you use multiple complex passwords in an easy-to-use encrypted vault where they are stored until they are needed.
Multi-factor authentication can also help your accounts by requiring more than one “key” to open your accounts, so to speak. Essentially, when you use multiple factors, hackers need more than just your password to break in, making it much more difficult. We recommend that you use at least two of the following three factors: something you have (an external device, like a smartphone), something you know (in this case, a password or PIN), and something you are (a biometric like an iris or fingerprint scanner). This will maximize your organization’s account security.
To learn more about what we can do for your business, give us a call at 978-798-6805.