Protect Your Password, Protect Your Life!
We use the computer for everything. We check our bank accounts online. We pay our bills online. We send email, log into social media accounts, write blogs and much more. Technology makes our lives easier and allows us to connect more with family and friends.
While having all these accounts makes life easy for someone trying to get information for a background check, they can also make it harder to protect your information. In Arizona and throughout the country, identity theft and online financial theft are growing problems. One way to protect yourself is to protect your passwords for these accounts.
Here are a few things that you can do to protect your passwords and your identity:
Use Separate and Unique Passwords
It may be easier for you to choose one, easy-to-remember password and use it for all your online accounts. However, that also makes it easier for a hacker to steal all of your personal information.
Use a unique password for each and every online account that you have. Don’t just choose the same word but change up the characters around it, such as password 1, password 2 and so on. Make sure the password is unlike any other password you use for any other site.
Make Your Passwords Complex
Your passwords should not be easy to guess. That means no using “password,” “admin,” or any combination of your child’s name, child’s birthday, your anniversary, your age, your dog’s name or any other personal details.
The best passwords are not just a single word. They are long phrases, such as “buyeggsfromthestore” or, even better, “treedogNikewindowsky.” The best passwords also have a combination of letters and numbers, special characters, and upper and lower case letters. An example would be”TreedogNike!windowsky@#34.”
The more complex your passwords are, the harder they will be for hackers to crack.
Change Passwords Often
Hackers can crack even the toughest passwords if given enough time. You should change all your passwords frequently — at least every three months if not more.
Do not recycle passwords. Don’t reuse passwords for the same account, and don’t just transfer passwords from one account to another. Come up with entirely new passwords for each account every time you change the password. It may seem like a lot of work, but it will be worth it knowing that your data is secure.
Choose Sites with Two-Factor Authentication
You are bound to forget your password or be in a place where you need to access your account but don’t have your password handy. In these cases, you can look up your password or your user ID, or you can request that it be sent to you.
A secure site will ask for more than your email address when sending you the forgotten password. A secure site should have two-factor authentication, which requires that you provide at least two pieces of information. That could mean providing your account number and your user ID to get your password. Or it could mean answering two personal questions that you previously chose for authentication. The more information that is requested, the more secure the site is and the more secure your account is.
Hide Your Passwords
With as many online accounts as most of us have, it can be hard to remember all of our unique, complex passwords — especially when we are changing them every few months (like we should). Make a list of your passwords, but keep them in a secure spot, like a safe or a safe deposit box at the bank. Do not keep them in a list on your computer, as these can be hacked. Do not keep them in a list in your wallet, as your wallet can be stolen. You can sign up for a service like LastPass or 1Password to store your passwords in one secure site.
If you feel that you have been the victim of identity fraud despite your best efforts to keep your data safe, you can work with a private detective in North Phoenix Arizona to discover the culprit and to get back what was stolen. TBL Investigator is an experienced private detective in Arizona ready to help you.