Password Security

Pick a strong password

Passwords are the first line of defense against break-ins to your computer, tablet, phone, and online accounts. Poorly chosen passwords can open your information to criminals, so make your passwords strong. Here's how.

Passwords should:

  • Contain upper case letters;
  • Contain lower case letters;
  • Contain numbers;
  • Contain special characters;
  • Be frequently changed;
  • Never be shared, and;
  • Be easy for you to remember but difficult for others to guess.

A good way to create a password is to use an acronym, also known as a passphrase, which is easy for you to remember. Such as “Am I going to Hawaii August 14 again?”. Using the 1st letter of each word, this would be “AIgtHA14a?”. Of course, this is an example. The password displayed here is no longer secure and should not be used.

Passwords should NOT:

  • Contain your name or any part of your name;
  • Contain keyboard patterns such as qwerty, asdfghijkl, or 12345678;
  • Contain your maiden name, your dog's name, your husband's middle name, etc.;
  • Be something that someone who knows you can guess;
  • Be too short;
  • Be old passwords or easy passwords spelled backwards;
  • Be something that you have to write down somewhere, and;
  • Contain public information about yourself from Facebook or Twitter.