Passwords are a pain. There are no two ways about it. As we increase our usage of online accounts, the more passwords we create. And the more passwords we create, the more we are likely to forget them.
We could, of course, use the same password for everything. That would make things easy. We are told, however, that we should use a different password for each account and that they shouldn’t be easily guessable.
Why should we use different passwords? Well, the idea is that if a hacker has obtained your email address and password, for example, and you use the same or similar password on other accounts, the hacker could get into those accounts as well.
So how do we easily create different, complicated passwords and still keep our sanity?
The first thing you can do is write them in a notebook. It’s maybe controversial, but it is one of the safest methods there is. A hacker could get into your various accounts from anywhere in the world if you use the same passwords. It would be a lot harder for them, however, to get your many different passwords from out of your kitchen drawer.
As long as you keep the notebook safe and away from your computer to foil burglars, it’s reliable and easy to use.
The Real Trick
To make writing down the passwords even more secure, here is a method that will only reveal part of any password to anybody who may find them. It is so safe that you could even consider storing your passwords in this format on your computer or other devices.
The idea is to have a “PIN”. A series of numbers or letters or whatever you fancy that you can remember. The password would always contain this PIN, say at the end of the password, but that part is never written down.
For example, your Amazon password could consist of three parts:
The first would be AMA (for Amazon)
The second is random letter, numbers and other characters
The third is your PIN (i.e. 5879).
The result could, therefore, look something like AMAjyw?fiu5879.
You would, however, only write down AMAjyw?fiu in your notebook or file.
A Safe Secret
When you look at your list of written down passwords, you can tell from the example above that it’s your Amazon password by the first three digits. It saves even noting what they are for and further securing your list.
OK, so it is possible someone could guess the company from the letters. The secret, however, is that only you know to append the password with 5879 (the PIN). Nobody else will know this, and the password written down is therefore useless to anybody else.
We should use a different – and complicated – password for each of our various accounts. To make this as simple as possible, write them down but use a method like I have mentioned, ensuring you know them but nobody else could.
If you have further questions on any of the above – or anything else – get in touch.