In today’s ever-changing world, we have a responsibility to manage and protect all of our assets. Part of that responsibility includes establishing and safeguarding strong passwords for all of our online accounts. Protecting one’s identity has become just as important as protecting one’s home or their family from harm. Whether one is technically savvy or internet challenged, one still needs to exercise common sense when it comes to securing their personal information.
Here are a few steps one can take to reduce the risk of becoming the victim of identity theft:
- Never use the same password for multiple accounts
- Create a unique password for each account and record them in an offline logbook
- Keep your password logbook in a secure location, not readily available by your computer
- Always include numbers, mixed capitalization, and symbols in your password when allowed
- Change/update your passwords at least once per year
- Change your passwords anytime you believe they may have been compromised
- Never share your credit card or other payment account information on an unsecured site
- Never save your payment account information on a site you do not use at least monthly
One way to create unique user ID’s and passwords is to use the first letter of each word in a statement combined with numbers and symbols. For example: “Now I have a new way of creating passwords for my online accounts” could be used to create the password: NIhanwocpfmOA19? This type of password would register with most sites as “Strong” and would not be easily deciphered by hackers.