Simple passwords may threaten your security

We all use them every day; it seems that we need a password to get into everything from our bank accounts, email, credit card accounts, work systems, plus more on top of these. The average person has dozens of online accounts, and most people’s password doesn’t cut the safety test.

Consumers find creating strong passwords tedious and complicated and the passwords are difficult to remember. That is why many people reuse the same password for multiple sites. However, that can be detrimental to you because if hackers compromise one account then they can access others with the same password.

Along with using different passwords, creating a password that is long, mixed upper and lowercase letters, along with numbers and symbols are important. When creating these passwords, it can seem daunting to try to remember them all, that is why Better Business Bureau suggests finding a reputable password manager, an easy-to-access application that stores all your password information.

Using multi-factor authentication, when available can create extra security for your information. The second piece would be a code sent to your phone or a random number generated by an app or token. Another form of this is also additional security questions that only you can answer. Like your childhood best friend, favorite pet or favorite food, questions like these that have very specific answers make it difficult for hackers to guess the answer.

According to the University of North Carolina, researchers who did a study of password histories from defunct accounts learned that consumers who set weak passwords were more likely to get other accounts compromised by creating a simple environment for scammers to hack.

But the question often remains, how often should you change your password? One of the key signs you should change your password quickly is if you hear of a data breach with that company or organization. If you receive that notification, change your password immediately on that account and on any other account that uses a similar password.

And finally, its worth mentioning that it’s a bad idea to write your password down on a piece of paper and stick it to your computer. If your home or office is ever broken into, it won’t take thieves long to access your computer and all of your accounts.

For more information on creating a secure password, visit or visit the Federal Trade Commission’s site as well for tips.

Jeremy Johnson is the eastern Idaho marketplace manager for Better Business Bureau, serving the Northwest and Pacific. Contact her at by

Jeremy Johnson is the eastern Idaho marketplace manager for Better Business Bureau, serving the Northwest and Pacific. Contact her at by

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Source: Business