How secure is your Password? Our top 3 password hygiene tips.
As today marks International ‘Change Your Password Day’, we thought it only fitting to highlight our top 3 password hygiene tips. Adequate password safety is central to the maintained security of all businesses; weak or reused passwords allows cyber-criminals opportunities to access and steal your business data, making optimal password safety a necessity.
If you feel wary about updating your passwords away from memorable favourites, then the data speaks for itself when it comes to the business risk - 33% of account-compromise victims have stopped doing business with companies and websites that leaked their credentials, meaning you could be posing a threat to your business’ future, reputation, and profitability.
Tip 1: Adopt Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).
Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is a tool that largely removes the threat of a password breach, being able to block up to 99.9% of cyber-attacks. In fact, it’s the simplest way your business can protect users and data against attack. MFA is a fairly simple practice, in which your system requires authentication using more than a password. In order to strengthen an accounts security, MFA can call upon various means of authentication, such as:
- Something you know (i.e. a password),
- Something you have (i.e. a mobile device),
- Something you are (i.e. a biometric input).
MFA is beneficial for a number of reasons; it reduces access to accounts via unique sign-in methods, subsequently reducing identity theft and fraudulent attacks. It also allows greater working flexibility, and alerts users to fraudulent sign-in attemps. To enable MFA, simply navigate to the security settings tab of your accounts, and switch on the MFA setting.
Tip 2: Store passwords securely.
There are a variety of methods people use to remember and store their passwords, but some are much safer than others. Security experts will often recommend that individuals use a reputable password management app to store their passwords; these apps are often encrypted and require one master password to give access to users.
Many popular internet browsers also offer password storage options; browsers such as Chrome, Safari, and Firefox all offer password management options. This is a convenient way to keep passwords handy, however they don’t transfer across browsers and can allow users to automatically log into accounts.
It’s widely recommended to avoid telling other individuals your passwords, and to avoid writing down passwords on paper or phones.
Tip 3: Consider your password content.
As 59% of people still use their name or birthdate in their password, this is an easy opportunity for cybercriminals to crack their security. Using easily identifiable and guessable terms is hugely detrimental to personal and business cybersecurity; when creating a password, it’s essential to use either undiscoverable word combinations paired with numbers and symbols, or use a computer-generated string of symbols.
Avoid using searchable passwords such as family names, birthdays and pets - all of which are easily identified by criminals!
Get Your Cybersecurity Practices Watertight
If you implement these 3 tips, your personal and business cybersecurity will undoubtably improve. Updating and strengthening your passwords is the first line of defence against basic hack attempts - to put it in perspective, a 12-character password takes 62 trillion times longer to crack than a six-character password. Thus, improving your roster of passwords is a strategic move towards maintaining optimal cybersecurity practices.
If you want to strengthen your business’ overall cybersecurity strategy, then it’s important to discuss your concerns and needs with your managed services provider. Any trusted IT partner should be able to help you identify weaknesses in your infrastructure, and create a corresponding cybersecurity roadmap to alleviate concerns. At Fitzrovia IT, we specialise in cybersecurity, assisting our clients in optimising their business’ cybersecurity strategy. Our FitzMSS managed security packages include offerings such as detection and response services, giving clients peace of mind.
If you want to discuss your security concerns, then speak with one of our IT experts today.