5 things you’d know about password security, if you had time to care

Security

If you use the internet the way a normal person does, password management is a pain. Dozens of passwords for dozens or services clogging your brain. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Over the last two months using the new service Triberr, we invited a group of bloggers to work as brand ambassadors on behalf of our password manager KEY, which makes securing your accounts simple. They tried KEY out and shared their experience with their readers. From them, we were reminded that there are some password truths we take for granted.

Here are five important points they made that everyone needs to know.

1. People are sick of changing their passwords.
It’s constant warning, “Passwords breached. Change all your passwords!”

Not only do we have to put up with our trust being breached, as Breakthrough Radio’s Michele Price pointed out, we have to take the time to change all our passwords ourselves.

If you’re a regular reader of Safe and Savvy, you know that experts aren’t being sincere when they tell you to change all your passwords, all the time.

“The dirty little secret of security experts is that when there’s a data breach and they recommend to ‘change all your passwords,’ even they don’t follow their own advice, because they don’t need to,” our Security Advisor Sean Sullivan told us.

The only reason you’d need to change all your passwords is if you made a few basic mistakes.

2. Our password choices can make us vulnerable.
“You should have diversified your usernames and passwords in the first place,” Harri Hiljander, our Product Director or Personal Identity Protection, told LeadersWest‘s Jim Dougherty.

If you reuse passwords, every hack or breach is exponentially worse. But still people reuse credentials over and over for a pretty obvious reason.

3. It’s too hard to come up with and remember strong, unique passwords for all our important accounts.
Our bloggers presented the suggestions for generating strong unique passwords our Labs offered — and to be honest, the advice can be overwhelming.

But if you’re going to come up something that protects your financial details, it’s essential.

That’s why the bloggers liked KEY’s ability to generate strong passwords for them. “I think this is the best feature of all,” World of My Imagination‘s Nicole Michelle wrote.

4. Password security is especially important to people who work online — and who doesn’t?

If you spend your time building up an online publication your readers trust, the integrity of your site is priceless, as we learned from WhyNotMom.com.

Sean advised our bloggers to sure that their WordPress — or any blogging platform — password isn’t being reused anywhere else.

In addition to the three things everyone needs to do — back up everything, patch all your software and use updated security software — he also advised them to make sure they keep a watchful eye on all their blog plug-ins. Keep up with their updates. Also, keep an eye out for plug-ins that are no longer being updated. Get rid of those.

5. You should have at least one email account you don’t share with anyone.
Identity management gets harder and harder as our usernames become more public. Everyone gets by now — we hope — that you should never reuse pairings of logins and passwords for your crucial accounts. But there are extra steps you can take, as our bloggers learned from our KEY experts.

“Create a new email address for online accounts, don’t share it with ANYONE.” Chelsea from Me and My Handful wrote about our Labs’ advice to keep your login names secret. “So smart, and yet, we don’t do it.”

But all this knowledge is useless if you don’t have a system to keep your passwords secure.

Set up a system to secure your most important accounts then pick a password manager. We suggest you try KEY for free, of course –and stick with it.

Cheers,

Jason

[Image via kris krüg via Flickr ]

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