Five top tips for secure password protection

About the author

Jochen Haller is Chief of Information Security at 1 & 1 IONOS. He is responsible for the management of information security and for the continuous improvement of information security standards within the company.

The security of your business is of the utmost importance. However, when it comes to protecting companies from online threats, only 15% of the UK population feels they know how to protect themselves from harmful activities.

No matter the size of your business, the first line of defense against hackers and unwanted visitors are creating a good password protection strategy. While biometric and facial recognition technologies may be increasing in popularity, text-based alphanumeric passwords will remain the norm for the foreseeable future. So how can you make sure your business is as protected as possible?

1. Do not recycle passwords

64% of people use the same password for some or all of their online accounts. That means that if hackers access one, it is a matter of seconds before they access another. It is vital that you spend time creating your password. Do not use the same logins for each account that you set up; instead, create a unique and difficult password to guess for each platform. It may seem like hard work in your memory, but it is worth it for business security.

2. Use your imagination

The National Cyber ​​Security review of the 100,000 main passwords to be unlocked by online scammers discovered that 23.2 million people used the trivial "123456" as the password. Remember: your passwords must be memorable, but not guessed. That means you should not include information in your password that can be easily discovered online; for example, your date of birth, the name or street number of your company.

3. Complexity is key

Think of longer sentences, different digits and special characters. Prayers may be easier to remember than one-word passwords, so create memorable slogans and then replace some letters with numbers and punctuation marks.

Password systems can also work well, where a strong master passphrase varies slightly for different accounts. The idea is that you remember the "main" part of a sentence, but make small variations depending on the account in which you log in. For example, the passphrase could be & # 39; Us! Ng [INSERT WORD] MakesM3Happy & # 39 ;, where the second word is edited according to the site where you log in: & # 39; Us! NgEbayMakesM3Happy & # 39; or & # 39; Us! ngFacebookMakesM3Happy & # 39 ;.

4. Consider random generators

GMX's research on UK password habits found that 30% of respondents use 10 or more services that require a login. With that in mind, creating, storing and remembering all these passwords can be a daunting task. However, there are tools that can help you and your company with this. For example, if you are struggling to be creative, password managers like KeePassX can help you create unique suggestions for you.

5. Use encryption for added protection

The implementation of password managers where you can store passwords in encrypted form and access them using a master password is a simple way to strengthen business security.

In addition, an effective approach is to configure two Factor Authentication to add another security layer. Here, the user provides two different authentication factors to verify their identity, which means better protection of the resources accessed. This generally includes entering a text-based password, as well as a second security factor, such as a security token or a biometric element (facial scan or fingerprint).

For more information on how to protect your online business, see the 1 & 1 IONOS password security guide.

Jochen Haller, Chief of Information Security in 1 & 1 IONOS

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