Keep your passwords safe

We all have a multitude of online accounts, and a multitude of passwords to remember. And with the amount of information available online these days, hackers and criminals are becoming more adept at breaking passwords.

We’ve put together a list of some of the most common password mistakes people can make to keep your accounts secure and less susceptible to today’s cyber criminals.

Don’t modify existing passwords

It may be simple and easier to remember, but simply changing a few bits of your existing passwords could spell trouble. It’s been found that the most common change people make is simply adding a number to the end – with 123, birthdays and famous sporting numbers the most common.

Don’t use the same password for multiple accounts

This one is pretty straight forward! If one of your accounts is hacked, then the hackers will have access to everything you do online – banking, credit cards, social media and your emails!

Avoid special dates or numbers

With the sheer volume of personal data available online, it can be very easy to narrow down key numbers people may use in their passwords.

Don’t save passwords in your browser

It’s super easy to type your password in once, and then let Google remember it for you. While it may be convenient, it can make it even easier for hackers to gain control of your accounts. All they need to do is gain access to your computer or phone, and if you use public wifi networks, this is incredibly easy for someone even with limited experience or knowledge.

Sporting references

As with using special dates, it’s easy for hackers to see what football team you follow. A common password theme people all over the world use is referencing their favourite team. It’s another easy way for hackers to narrow down possible passwords.

Avoid family names

If you’re a parent, a common password you may have used incorporates your child’s name. Hackers are continuously finding ways to mine personal information from all available online resources, so best to stay away from any references that are easy to put together when creating a password.

Using easy keys

Another common password strategy people take is to create one using adjacent keys on the keyboard or phone. Examples of these include ‘1234’, ‘qwerty’, ‘123654’ and so on. If this is how you create your passwords, you may want to change them.

Being a bit naughty

Some of the most common passwords used across the internet include swear words. If you do include these in your passwords, it may be worth finding a different outlet for your frustration!

So, if you use any of the password references listed above, it may be time to rethink them.

The best (and most secure) passwords use combinations of personal information and favourite things that would not be available in the public domain. Throw in a few capital letters, special characters such as ‘%’ or ‘#’ and you’ve just made it much harder for anyone to access your online accounts!

And to make it even harder for hackers, consider changing your passwords regularly!