Draft: Creating smarter passwords.

Recently I learned from a teacher in North Carolina about the importance of passwords.

For many, this is a new reality. Now, one has to memorize multiple passwords. And if you work for a company or an organization that requires you to change it every three months, you understand how tough they could be to remember passwords.

However, it’s something we have to do we have to be smart about it, too. Recently, we have seen in the news about actors and athletes who have been “hacked”. As a technical person, they really were not hacked. They just allowed people to easily guess at their passwords. You see, they didn’t have very complicated passwordS. In fact, in another article, I read about how many athletes use their nickname, their mascot, and their number as their password. This isn’t hard for mischievous people with time on their hands.

Another disingenuous activity that happens online is when companies and people pose to be someone else requiring you to input your personal information. This, you should be very careful and aware of. It’s called “phishing”. This is when someone poses to be someone like Apple and ask you to update your credit card information and your password via a social link usually, not apple). You have to see if that email is for real. Stop. Take a closer look. Call them if you want to verify its legitimacy, too.

While at the school, teacher Stephanie Karst gave me a few cool tips on how to be more strategic and smarter about password choices..

Here is a video of our quick tip interview.

http://vimeo.com/109624777

These are really good tips. I am always amazed how many times I still see people with a sticky note with their username and password stuck to their computer. Or, a book on their desk called “passwords.” This is a new time. There’s way too much information online about you and leaving your keys out for everyone to find and use is not acting responsibly today.

Challenge: receiving your passwords. Think about how you can be more discrete and strategic. Also, think about how to retrieve it and store it in safe places.

If you take the time to think about your passwords a bit more– you’ll avoid a potential bad story.

M

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