Your Passwords Need to be Stronger

May 1, 2023 | passwords

You will agree that having passwords to access your devices, networks and data is the first step to securing your business data. However, having passwords is not enough. The passwords have to be strong and difficult to detect or hack into. A lot of ‘smart’ devices today such as phones, tablets and laptops come with facial recognition and fingerprint sensors that can be used in lieu of passwords. But what happens when you don’t have biometric security measures? You need to ensure that your passwords are strong and also maintain good password hygiene.

Maintaining good password hygiene involves:

  • Complexity: passwords that are not simple or easy to crack. Ideally, a password should be at least 12 characters long, mixed case, and include alphanumeric and symbol characters.
  • Uniqueness: using the same password across different sites, programs or systems is risky. For example, having the same password for your email and laptop is a wide-open door.
  • Secret: sharing passwords with coworkers and sharing passwords via emails or text puts the accounts they’re supposed to protect at risk.
  • Secure Storage: storing passwords safely and securely, rather than on a piece of paper, in email or in a file on a computer without encryption protects from accidental exposure.
  • Management: changing passwords and revoking access after someone quits the organization or when temporary access is no longer needed ensures only those who should have access, do have it.

Multi Factor authentication: Fortifying your data even further

Multi factor authentication involves putting up multiple barriers to data access for better data security. The idea is to have additional layers of security to protect your data. The first layer is usually something simple like passwords, security questions to answer, PIN numbers, etc. The second layer could be an OTP (One-time password), that is sent to an alternate email or phone number, security tokens or access cards that can be scanned. The third data security mechanism could be something personal such as fingerprint or retina scan. Having multiple security layers makes it more difficult for cybercriminals to hack into your system and access your data.

Cybersecurity is a lot of work, but you can’t afford to ignore it. The price you may have to pay if you or business becomes a target of a cybercriminal is too high to take cybersecurity lightly. Download our whitepaper, Cybersecurity basics you can’t ignore, to learn how you can safeguard your business, big or small, from cybercrime.

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