Steps You Can Take to Create an Unhackable Password

article by Arya A. author
A password is only good if nobody else can guess it. Unfortunately, the vast majority of passwords are closely associated with our names, names of loved ones, or special events. This makes them easy to remember, but also quite easy for hackers to guess. How strong is your password?

It is possible to ramp up the strength of the password by following commonsense advice. Some of the ways to strengthen a password include:

  • Avoiding sequential digits;
  • Avoiding use of one’s name in the password;
  • And adding additional characters.

Uniqueness is a difficult concept to wrap one’s head around, because there is truly nothing new under the sun. Names and variations of names, spellings, and variations of spellings are available for anyone to guess, but only the best of them are good enough for passing the password strength checker test. A good mix of numbers, symbols, lowercase letters, and uppercase letters is required to boost overall security. For starters, capitalization of the first letter of unique words in a phrase should always be the norm. If the password phrase is chummygucci, it should be capitalized as follows ChummyGucci.

Believe it or not, by simply performing this capitalization, the strength of the password has been tripled. Next, it’s important to add additional layers of uniqueness to the password combination. This can be done by adding all sorts of special characters such as %, #, ? S, $,), @ and many of the others. These act as randomizing elements in the password creation process. Once these characters have been added to the password, the password creation tool will show a maximum strength indicator.

However, there are further edits that can be made to the password to bolster it accordingly. Experts advise the use of things like substitution ciphers for further security. The letter O can be replaced with a 0, and the letter S can be replaced with a $ or a 5. The use of such enhancements can dramatically alter the security of a password. In terms of your ability to remember the password, anything over 12 characters is going to be difficult. That’s why it is important for people to make use of the best password manager and applications.

Avoid Predictability in Generating Passwords

There are many rules governing the creation of passwords, notably the use of uppercase and lowercase letters. For example, all uppercase letters should precede a lowercase letter, a number or a symbol, and they should be proceeded by a lowercase letter, a number or a symbol too. The process also applies to lowercase letters.

The length of a password is not the sole determinant of its strength. Sometimes passwords that have been shortened from 15 characters to 12 characters can be far stronger, provided they are fully optimized. It is rather difficult to remember all of these tips, tricks, and strategies with password protection and memorization. However, there are much easier ways to go about creating an effective password by using a password manager. When these types of tools are used, users simply worry about one password – the master password to the best password manager – everything else is safely stored in an encrypted file.

Be Obscure – It Pays Off with Password Creation

There are many ways for hackers to go about infiltrating the security systems in place. For example, passwords that pass the alphanumeric test of randomness and non-predictability can take millions of years to crack. Other passwords that run on standard logic such as names and dates of birth can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few days to crack. As always, it is important to keep passwords and password hints as private as possible. The biggest mistake people make with passwords are related to the hints to recover those passwords. Remember, obscure questions and answers work best in this instance. The best password manager programs include LastPass and Dashlane.