[By Security Chick : Terry Perkins] October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month. What better month for me to try my blogging skills! National Cyber Security Awareness Month is designed to increase awareness about Internet security. A good place to start is with good, strong passwords. Not all Internet sites need to have same strength password. For example, banking sites need stronger passwords than a news site (some news sites require a login). As a matter of fact, one of my pet peeves is when a site emails the login and passwords that you have just set up. Rant – why do I need an email sent with the information that I just set up. I have sent many a email ranting about just that. Most of the time I get a response like most people can’t remember there passwords. Great! Let’s send it in email – in the same email, login and password. Sorry, I digress.
Good, strong passwords are 12+ characters and do not contain dictionary words, kids or spouses names, birth dates, pets names and other identifiable information. Passwords should contain each of the following categories: upper case, lower case, numbers and special characters. This is very important. I use phrases or mantras – okay positive mantras. Here is an example: Four score and seven years ago, our father brought forth a new nation…….. The password could be 4S&7yrsAofb4th!. Please don’t use this one. It is just an example. When I type my password I am then saying the phrase or better yet positive mantra in my head thus reinforcing the positive thought. Okay – I admit it. I’m a little weird. What do you expect from a security person.