Email passwords deserve as much thought and planning as your Facebook and online bank accounts. After all, the email contains sensitive information as well, including personal letters and passwords and other details of your other accounts. A strong password should be complex and unpredictable enough to fend off hackers, yet familiar enough for you to remember.
What makes a good password for email?
Indications of password strength include:
Mixing characters: upper and lowercase, numbers, alphabet, and symbols
Using non-dictionary terms
Using a unique password for each website
Changing passwords frequently
Using a wide range of characters
Varying a phrase to the point where it is unpredictable
Avoiding predictable sequences such as “123abc.”
Let’s take a closer look at this.
Mixing characters: This means avoiding letters-only or numbers-only passwords. It is okay to use them in combination, just vary the order.
Using non-dictionary terms: These are obvious and can be cracked with software that uses the dictionary.
Unique passwords: If one account gets compromised, you don’t want to put others at risk.
Changing passwords: Set a reminder to yourself to change your passwords on a regular basis.
Using a wide range of characters: The more keyboard characters you use, the harder is to guess and tougher to crack.
Varying a phrase: Here’s an example. You may start with a phrase like “My number one favorite Internet site.” You turn it into “MyNumberOneFavoriteNetSite” to “My#1Fav0r1teNetS1te” to “mY#1fAV0R1TEnETs1TE” adding other characters as you desire.
Avoiding predictable sequences: Self-explanatory. Other predictable ones may include your name, names of kids, anniversary and birth dates, passport and social security numbers.
Password Protection Guidelines
When making a password, make it difficult to crack, but not so difficult that you would forget it without the help of a password manager or a piece of paper where you write it down. You should be able to memorize your password. If you do n’t you need to pick a good email password recovery software.
You can write down the email password somewhere. Make sure only you will have access to it. A fireproof safe would be good.
Use the password. Check your mail daily without saving the passphrase. This may be a little bothersome but it guarantees you will remember it through frequent use.
Anyone can create a free email account regardless of their Internet expertise. But don’t let the simplicity of the process lead you to create a weak password. Apply the rules of strong password generation and earn yourself peace of mind knowing your email is well-protected.
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