What makes a password safe?
We show you the most important attributes of strong passwords, that make the use of passwords secure and safe your data from unwanted attacks.
A strong password.
Create a random password!
Every password which can be found in a dictionary, like names of your family or pets, sequence of numbers, or dates of birth, can be cracked within a few minutes by a dictionary attack.
For this method a word list or a dictionary is used to guess your password. The software can be easily found on the Internet and used by everyone without big hacking skills.
(Examples for bad passwords: 123456, password, admin)
SplashData's top 25 list of "Worst Passwords of 2013":
Choose a long password.
Your password should have at least eight characters! The longer your password is, the safer it is.
A password with eight characters including only numbers (ex. 05478653) can be cracked in at most 0.0477 seconds.
A password with eight characters including lowercase letters, uppercase letters and numbers (ex. h97B0Z6K) can be cracked in at most 28.93 days.
The method which is used, called Brute-force search. It tries every combination of characters to find the password.
In 2011 a normal computer could generate 2.096.204.400 keys per second. Nowadays, the computers can generate much more keys per second.
Here an example:
|We use lowercase letters:||abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz||= 26|
|We use uppercase letters:||ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ||= 26|
|We use numbers:||0123456789||= 10|
|Number of characters:||26+26+10||= 62|
|Password length:||7 characters|
|Password combinations||= number of characterspassword length|
|= 62 * 62 * 62 * 62 * 62 * 62 * 62|
|= 3.521.614.606.208 password combinations|
|Time||= password Combinations / keys/s|
|= 3.521.614.606.208 / 2.096.204.400 keys/s|
|= 1680 seconds|
|= 28 minutes|
|= 0.47 hours|
|Password length:||8 characters|
|Password combinations||= 628|
|= 218.340.105.584.869 password combinations|
|Time||= password Combinations / keys/s|
|= 218.340.105.584.869 / 2.096.204.400 keys/s|
|= 104159 seconds|
|= 1736 minutes|
|= 28.39 hours|
|= 1.21 days|
|As you can see, the required time decoding your password increases enormously, the longer your password.|
Check the strength of your password!
Number of characters:
How to remember such an unique password?
Here is an easy method to memorize your password:
|1.||Start with a sentence with at least eight or more Words.||"Long and complex passwords are safer and easier to remember."|
|2.||Use the first character of every word in your sentence.||"lacpasaetr."|
|3.||Change the first half of the alphabet to uppercase letters.||"LACpAsAEtr."|
|4.||Add numbers and symbols to your password or replace |
characters with numbers and symbols.
|Try it with your own sentence!|
Try to use one password for one website, to prevent huge damage with your online accounts.
If a hacker gets access to your password and you use it for many accounts, for example your online banking, email and ebay account, he can do more harm than if he only knows your mail account password. Change your password often and regularly. You should have a password at most for six months. It is better to change it every three months or when you haven't logged in to an account for a long time. If it is too much effort for you, do it at least for the websites which are most to protect. Here you need to find a measure between practicability and safety.
Don't handle your passwords negligent!
Safely store your passwords!
To guarantee maximum safety, never store your passwords in a document on your computer or on sticky notes at home.
If you can't remember your passwords, perhabs because you change it regularly, it is best to use the appropriate software to store your passwords. This software administrates your passwords which are stored in the software encrypted. You get access to your software only if you have a master password.
Another possibility is to store the passwords in a completely safe place which is secured from unauthorized access, such as in a lockable or password secured container.
Never enter your password on websites that you don't know!
For example, websites you have received from a link in an e-mail. This is probably a phishing mail, which was created to steal your account information.
These mails and websites may seem to be professional, but don't trust them. Enter the URL of your bank and store websites always directly in your browser and navigate to the account input.
Also never enter your account information on public systems, to which everyone has access like an internet café, open Wi-Fi connections as well as for the system of a colleague or friend! You don't know the security settings and you don't know if the computer is infected.
Even the best password can't protect against unauthorized access, because criminals can read along your password by keylogger or trojans.
Always keep your software up to date, especially anti virus software and firewall. But only use one software of the same type, as an example multiple firewalls can block each other and thus causes an insufficient protection.
IF you follow these simple tips, you are very safe on the internet and offer your accounts very high protection.
But remember: No password can be 100% safe, even if you use a password length of 20 characters or more. You can only make it harder to crack.
For more Information visit Wikipedia.
For our german version of this website visit www.passwort-generator.eu.