How can I go about creating strong passwords? This is a question often asked of us in various forums and newsgroups. Creating strong passwords is essential to everyday Internet surfing.
You have probably heard that you should never share your passwords with anyone, and that you shouldn’t enter your password on a link you received via email (because this is the most common way for scammers to ‘phish‘ your account). This is wise advice, but all of the precautions in the world may not keep your account safe if you do not have a strong password.
The best way to create a strong password is to use a completely random string of 8 to 12 characters, including letters, numbers, and symbols. However, if you are like most people, you would not be able to remember this type of password and would very likely write it down somewhere near your computer – or worse, on a card in your wallet – completely defeating the purpose of having a password in the first place.
What to do, then? Use a pass phrase to create your seemingly random password. The pass phrase should be a sentence of 8 to 12 words that you can easily remember. Use the first letter of each word as one character in the password. Use upper and lower case, and substitute numbers or symbols for some of the letters. In this way, you can have a strong password that is easy to remember.
Here’s an example of how it works. Start by thinking of a sentence 8 to 12 words long that would be easy for you to remember.
This sentence will be easy for me to remember!
Next, write down the first letter of each word in the sentence.
Now, let’s substitute some numbers for the letters/words. In this example, we’ll substitute the number 4 for the word ‘for’, and the number 2 for the word ‘to’.
Finally, let’s use the capitalisation & punctuation from the original sentence to make the password even stronger.
That’s all there is to it. By following this procedure, you can create your own strong, safe password that you will be able to remember without needing to write it down.
Another way to create strong passwords is to use the magic phrase solution. This is how it works.
A: You build up a magic phrase that only you know – lets say Ty%1Z
B: Once you have a magic phrase, ensure that it has some capitalization, a number and a symbol. You then tie it to any website that you intend to login to.
for example lets assume you need to create a password for www.419eater.com in your mind you always use the last or first or second letters of the domain name as a “salt” addition to the password. For this example lets assume I always use the first three letters or numbers of the domain name (excluding the www) and I always flip numbers to letters (leet) my password for www.419eater.com would be Ty%1Zai9 – Easy to work out for others then
www.scamwarners.com would be Ty%1Zsc4
www.infosniper.net would be Ty%1Z1nf0
and so on.
This is another method that allows you to remember all your passwords without having to write them down anywhere.