I never know whether to laugh or cry when I walk into a customer account and I see a sticky note on their desk with a bunch of their passwords. Somewhere in time passwords were a good idea for keeping our data safe, but this whole password thing has gotten so cumbersome, there is NO way to keep all of our different passwords in our heads. The only way to keep them all straight is to write them down. But writing them down and keeping them handy also leaves us vulnerable to passwords being stolen.
Passwords are the keys to the IT castle and it doesn’t matter how strong your walls are if the lock on the door is easily picked. They’re of particular interest to people like me because they’re often the one component of a security system whose creation and safety is entrusted to the users of that system rather than its designers and administrators.
In order to remember and keep track of all the logins of their lives, a lot of people use the same one, two, or three passwords. What’s more, many people use passwords that have very poor password security — names, nicknames, dates of birth, maiden names, and other obvious and predictable information. Those are the passwords that leave us almost as vulnerable as a stick note under your keyboard.
Unfortunately for us, most sites have the convention of requiring at least one capital letter, and a special character, so even if we wanted to , we aren’t going to truly be able to pick a password we can remember. But, have no fear, I just read a post that could make this entire password conundrum a little easier.
Instead of trying to think of very clever, nonsensical passwords, the original creator of the password formula suggests that we use three words with no caps and no special characters. Don’t use your name, your parents names, your children or siblings names, but pick three words you can string together and easily remember.
Don’t use this, but here’s an example, soapdogtrain. Random words, no relation from one to another, but easy for you to remember and difficult for another person to guess.