When creating an account with a service, you’ll always be prompted to give it a password. Passwords have been an internet mainstay since the start, though they’ve had to become more complex over time. This is because simple passwords are easier to crack by bad actors. Fortunately, there are things you can do and tools you can use to make sure any business account stays off-limits.
Uncrackable Password Tips
First, you should know which accounts to protect more than others. While protecting all of your accounts is ideal (and not by using the same password for all of them) you should pay special attention to money accounts. Money accounts aren’t just online banking details, it’s any account that has the ability to receive cash. That includes delivery services like Amazon and also paid online entertainment, like iGaming providers, where hundreds of password-protected game instances are being played at once with real money. There are high business standards that these websites need to meet when they process transactions for customers, so whether it’s Amazon or Paddy Power Bingo, they go to great lengths to keep user accounts safe on their end. That means you need to uphold your end of the bargain by choosing a strong password.
A strong password is as random and non-specific as possible. When creating most passwords nowadays, many websites will help you avoid common pitfalls. They’ll make sure your password isn’t too short and that you use your entire keyboard, from lowercase letters to uppercase, and even a few non-alphabet symbols thrown in too.
While it’s a start, you should also depersonalize the password as much as possible. This means not including or basing the password off of any pertinent details to your life. That means no birthdays or sentimental years, no names, no phrases that can be traced back to you. Social engineering is the art of cracking somebody’s security just by knowing enough about their personal lives, as explained here by Kaspersky. The best password could belong to anybody, you just happen to be the only one who knows it.
Use Password Managers Or Passkeys
A big cause of modern password failure is the sheer number of accounts we need to manage. Having a different password for each account can be exhausting to remember, and keeping a list in a separate doc or a sheet of paper can expose you to more risk. Fortunately, there are password managers and newly emerging passkey technologies that can help you with that.
Password managers function by randomly generating passwords for each account. Those accounts are connected to your manager suite, which is itself accessed through a master password. This means you can put all your effort into just one uncrackable password that will then protect the rest. Password managers use state-of-the-art cryptography to produce results that are as random as possible. There are other benefits to password managers, as detailed by the British National Cyber Security Centre.
Passkeys are your other alternative, spearheaded by those who want to move away from passwords altogether one day. Passkeys provide authentication by a different proofing method, like a pattern or a fingerprint, much like unlocking a smartphone. However, this corresponds to a unique key saved onto the user’s device, specifically created for the account in question and the linked device. There’s no exchange of sensitive information, the key isn’t saved anywhere online, and even if the device becomes compromised, the key is useless. Not all services accept passkey creation, however.
To maintain the best possible online security right now, follow password best practices and make use of a manager, so you don’t have to worry about the other account passwords. When able, try using passkeys to compatible services like those provided by Google or Apple.