Cybersecurity has become increasingly important in the modern world. In addition to accessing critical data – like our bank accounts – via mobile devices, more and more of us are working from home or with remote teams. Password security has become essential. How can you keep your digital information safe without making your life more difficult at the same time? We’ve compiled a list of the finest password tactics, techniques, and tips accessible right now.
What Passwords become Vulnerable?
The first step in strengthening password security is to understand how hackers get their hands on our credentials.
Writing down your password was probably the worst thing you could do as a kid because of the stories you heard. Still, pinning “John’s Banking Password” to the screen with a post-it note isn’t the best method to go about your day-to-day activities.
Your sensitive data is not being harvested by a cybercriminal from a note on your desk, though. As a result, unfriendly persons in your life, such as a bully at work or an ex-lover, might be more likely to engage in vengeful conduct. This outdated approach to password protection ignores all of the most frequent methods of cyber penetration.
When it comes to cybercrime, phishing is one of the most effective social engineering tricks. Using the guise of a reputable company, website, or other third-party authority, they solicit your password information. Today’s advanced phishing schemes require regular attention to avoid being a victim of the Nigerian Prince who simply requires your bank account information to collect your millions. In the next part, we’ll discuss several possible remedies.
2) Oversharing on social media
Hacking has made many people overly generous with their personal information. Playing “challenges” on the internet is a popular pastime for many people. Most of us know better than to put our passwords or SSNs in the body of a Facebook post, but the truth is that many of us do so without considering who could read the post or why the “game” is being played in the first place.
3) Fake credentials
Hackers utilise stolen databases and lists from data breaches to attempt illegal information against accounts in order to commit credential stuffing. As a result of large-scale data breaches, we are often unable to stop information theft. We may, however, mitigate the harm to our own privacy by employing effective password management techniques.
4) Brute Forcing
In spite of their crude nature, brute-force tactics continue to provide results for cybercriminals. In order to guess passwords and encryption keys, they employ automation to execute a vast number of trial-and-error techniques against accounts.
Keylogging is the practice of secretly installing dangerous software on your computer. Password harvesting for online banking and safe logins is made much easier with these tools, which capture the keystrokes you make on your keyboard.
6) Using the Wrong Password
Using passwords that are too easy to guess is an all-too-common practice among computer users. With this technique, hackers can “password spray,” or try a large number of different, commonly used passwords to see whether a match is made on your account name.
7) Local Discovery
Local discovery is the only current password theft approach that is still related to the old myth about writing them down. Malicious software on your PC can identify plain text files on your PC where you’ve written the data.
Ransomware has made it easier for hackers to demand your passwords and threaten you with extortion or data loss if you don’t comply..
Retaining the secrecy of your password
What can you do now that you know how hackers get their hands on your passwords?
Robust Passwords and Passphrases have a lot of power.
First and foremost, passwords that are tough to decipher are essential. There’s more to it than just avoiding the most obvious passwords, though.
A combination of upper and lowercase letters, digits, and special characters in a long password is more difficult to crack even with brute-force assaults and artificial intelligence (AI).
Social media oversharing provides an abundance of information about people’s names, birthdays, hometowns, pets’ names and so on. Random chains are your best chance. When it comes to creating a really random string of characters, password generators are your best friend. However, they can be tough to remember.
This is why “passphrases” are becoming more popular as passwords in the present day. Aside from the fact that these are short phrases, they also have other crucial aspects (letter cases, numerals, and special characters) that make them simpler to remember. For example, “Suz@nL3Cupc@kes4Breakfast” would come to mind.
This password is easy to remember, but it’s a strong and secure one that can’t be readily guessed. Susan enjoys three cupcakes for breakfast. You should, of course, avoid using your own name or any other personal information in your password.
Preventing Repetitive Behavior
While it’s simpler on the brain, it’s a terrible idea to use the same password for many logins. Hackers have access to anything if they acquire the password once. Even a minor tweak in password choosing can significantly improve security. You should at the very least check to see if the password you used on a shopping site isn’t being used elsewhere, such as your bank account, investment portfolio, or work server.
Companies should conduct “password audits” to ensure that passwords are being updated on a regular basis and that they are adhering to strict criteria. Even as an individual, it’s a good idea to update your most crucial passwords at least once a year. As a result, you are less likely to be a victim of identity theft or other forms of cybercrime.
It’s very uncommon for hackers to obtain really good results from phishing, especially as their attacks get more sophisticated. If an email appears to be from a reputable source, do not submit your login information into a form based on the sender’s instructions. Be on the lookout and use your common sense since this is something that very few genuine organisations will ever urge you to do. You should always double-check the website you’re being sent to and the email address sending it. When in doubt, contact the institution’s call centre or online support desk to verify that the request is authentic.
Breach of Data and Use of Two-Factor Authentication
In the face of massive cyberattacks on organisations like credit bureaus, there is nothing you can do. It’s up to you to keep an eye out for security lapses and make the necessary adjustments as soon as you’re alerted. You may minimise invasive access to your accounts by freezing your credit and using two-factor authentication (2FA).
Before an account may be accessed, a second confirmation source (typically a PIN delivered to your phone or email) must be provided. As a result, the impact of a password compromise is mitigated.
Best Practices in Malware Prevention and Response
Keyloggers are less likely to persist on your computer if you do regular scans and maintain a healthy PC. You may avoid ransomware and extortion attempts by being cautious and reasonable about the websites you visit and the documents you view. Maintaining frequent backups ensures that you never find yourself begging fraudsters for data that you can’t restore or roll back to.
Today’s digital environment necessitates the use of strong passwords. These steps will help you keep your personal information safe and secure against cyberattacks and data loss.