A strong password is long, contains letters, numbers and symbols, and doesn't contain any words from the dictionary, experts suggest. But how can you remember it?
Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Hacking news prompts password warnings

Canadians often lament the number of passwords they must remember and may be aggrieved to hear new warnings they should change and complicate them.  This week news broke that a Russian crime ring had collected some 1.2 billion username and password combinations. Experts suggest now is a good time for people to protect themselves by changing their passwords.

How many passwords?

Canadians may have several passwords for their computer systems at work. For example, I have different ones to open the computer: one for the audio manager, others for the photo manager, access to newswires and internal news. There are different ones for my pension information and to access my telephone messages.

In addition, Canadians may use passwords to access their home computers, mobile phones, bank accounts, several credit cards. Utilities like gas, electricity, and telecommunication providers are increasingly use online billing and require different passwords to access the information and pay bills,  and online shopping sites require them too. All passwords should, of course, be different.

Who knows who got hacked

Hold Security called the Russian breach “the largest known collection of stolen credentials” but did not identify the origins of the data or name the victim websites, citing nondisclosure agreements.

Canada’s public broadcaster, CBC recommends people who think their passwords may have been compromised, change them immediately and it offers seven ways to fortify them. Among them:  include using combinations of letters and numbers, upper and lower case and symbols. Not kidding.

It does not however suggest how my aging brain can go about remembering them all.

Categories: Society

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

For reasons beyond our control, and for an undetermined period of time, our comment section is now closed. However, our social networks remain open to your contributions.