In an era of short attention spans and time crunches, we’re often told to “keep it simple.” When it comes to the passwords that protect your vital information online, nothing is further from the truth.
When I was notified that my account had been taken over, my initial emotion was fear. I was afraid of the fraudster knowing where I live. Worse, the possibility that my hard-earned money could be spent on things other than for myself and my family was a terrifying thought.
When I spoke to my bank, they had some good advice. Among the better tips to prevent future breaches was to make my passwords very complex and harder for a fraudster to figure out and confiscate my account.
I had always made my passwords easy so that I can remember them in a pinch. But I learned the hard way that this is not the smartest idea.
Here are a few suggestions to keep your passwords not so simple and harder to guess:
- Do not use common phrases or words (like PASSWORD, for example).
- Avoid dates or information about you that can be easily guessed or found online.
- Give special thought to your security question answers.
- Get more advanced password tips and tricks.
Fraud is real and happening every day to someone you know. Financial institutions especially are targets for fraudsters to attack because, let’s be real, they have the money.
But whether it’s at your bank, on Facebook or wherever, guard your passwords and protect yourself from the “not you.”