Over 86% of all passwords are terrible. In other words, they are anything but secure.
But no matter how strong your passwords are, they won’t do you any good if you forget them. We’ve put together this guide to teach you how to make strong passwords and how to keep track of passwords.
This will keep you safer both on and offline.
Let’s get started!
What Makes a Password Secure?
Before we tell you how to keep track of your passwords, we’ll show you how to make secure passwords first.
This is important. Over 2.5 billion user accounts have been hacked so far this year. If you don’t have a secure password, you might turn into one of those people.
And if a hacker gets into your account, they might have access to your personal information and, in some cases, your bank account information as well. Identity theft online is a very real problem.
The best way to protect yourself from these things by creating secure passwords. So here’s the best way to do it.
Make It Long
Your passwords should be at least 12 characters long. If you can make your password longer, that’s even better.
Short passwords are easier to guess and crack, so although you might be tempted, don’t go shorter than 12.
Add Special Characters
Don’t rely on basic words for your passwords. Add special characters, such as symbols, numbers, and capital letters. You should try to include at least one of each of these special characters when making a password.
The more you add, the stronger your password will be.
Don’t Make It Obvious
The worst thing you can do is choose an obvious word or phrase for your password.
For example, if you’re creating a computer login password, don’t make your password “Computer.” Even renditions of this word, such as “C0mputer,” are still super obvious.
Don’t Reuse Passwords
Never reuse the same password for multiple different websites or accounts. This would give a hacker access to multiple of your accounts if they just get one of your passwords.
How to Keep Track of Passwords
Creating passwords that are over 12 characters and full of special symbols is great for security… but it can be hard on your memory.
Unless you’re a prodigy with memorization, you should always write out your passwords so you can keep track of them when your memory fails you.
Write Them All Down
One of the easiest ways to keep track of your passwords is to write them all on a piece of paper or in a notebook. This ensures they’ll all be in the same place where potential hackers won’t be able to find them.
But that means you have to know where you put the list. If you lose that piece of paper (which is an easy mistake), you’ll lose all your passwords.
So if you choose to go this route, make sure you put your list somewhere you’ll remember.
Use a Password Manager
A dedicated password manager will keep track of all your passwords for you.
These programs store all your passwords and login information and log in to all your websites automatically. They also protect this information with powerful encryption.
You’ll still have to remember the master password for the program, but it takes a lot of the burden off your shoulders.
Don’t Keep Them on Your Computer
If you keep your passwords in a document on your computer, hackers can get access to ALL your passwords at the same time. This will also come back to bite you if you lose your laptop (or if someone steals it).
What to Do If You Forget Your Password and Get Locked out of Your Computer
Forgetting one of your passwords is never a good thing. But forgetting your computer login password is even worse. If you can’t even get onto your computer, how are you supposed to fix the problem?
Well, it’s not impossible.
There are a few different methods you can try. Here’s what you should start with.
Use a Reset Disk
If you have a password reset disc, simply pop it into your computer. This disc should give you an option to reset your password. Click it and follow the prompts.
You should be able to buy one of these discs if you don’t have one already.
Get in as the Administrator
Your computer most likely has a hidden Administrator account. (You can disable this account, and if you have, this method won’t work for you.)
When you boot up your computer, immediately press and hold the F8 button. When the option comes up, click “Safe Mode.”
Then click the Administrator account on the home page. If you don’t have a home screen, just type the word “Administrator.” If there is a password option, leave it blank.
You should now be able to access all the other User Accounts and change the password without a problem.
Reset Your Password Online
If your computer uses a Microsoft account, you can reset your computer login password from your Microsoft account.
Of course, you’ll have to do this on a different computer.
First, go to the Windows 10 password reset support page and follow the “reset my password” prompts. This should give you the ability to enter a new password and get back into your computer.
Know When to Call a Computer Repair Company
If none of these options work, you should call a computer repair company. They’ll be able to get into your computer and create a new password for you.
But that takes time and money.
It’s important to learn how to keep track of passwords. Otherwise, you’ll end up with bigger problems on your hand.
Is your computer being stubborn? We can help! Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today!