Here Are A Couple of Things You’ve Been Getting Wrong About Passwords

Here Are A Couple of Things You’ve Been Getting Wrong About Passwords

No one likes to think that they can be hacked.

That is not because everyone thinks they are smart, but because we, as humans, have an aversion to being outfoxed. This could explain why many people are not even giving much thought to cybersecurity and identity theft as much as they are supposed to.

At some other times, we do the barest minimum and call it a day – set one strong password on your accounts and hope you never get hacked! Well, that’s just one of the common password misconceptions which could do you more harm than good.

Here are some others:

Passphrases are more secure than ordinary passwords

It is true that guessing passphrases would make things a little more complicated for a hacker, but that depends on the kind of passphrase you are using. The problem here is that you will most likely use a passphrase which you can remember, leading you down a road that makes it easier for hackers to get you.
For example, a very common passphrase in passwords is ‘iloveyou.’ Comparing that with other dictionary words that a hacker might try, this passphrase is only a little bit harder to guess!

Mixing uppercase letters with the lowercases makes all the difference

When you go to websites or try signing up for apps today, it is recommended that you make a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters for the best password security. You must have seen that so much; you now believe they are the gold standard for password security.

That could not be more wrong.

More often than not, the uppercase letters would be at the start of the password. In some other cases, users will alternate between lower and uppercases as the password progressed. Hackers are now sophisticated enough to train their algorithms to predict such models.

Special characters are the real deal

Following from above, the same apps and websites will also recommend throwing in at least one special character. Again, the biggest mistake here is trying to remember the password – so you use the symbols and special characters in such a way that you can easily recall them.

This is the kind of thinking that birthed such passwords like ‘p@ssword,’ ‘passw0rd,’ etc
Users with these passwords would feel they have satisfied all the rules of a strong password: 8 characters, alphanumeric characters as well as symbols.

In actuality, hackers also know to make such substitutions. You would, again, only be making the task a tiny bit more challenging for them.

You should always remember your passwords

On average, the internet user has more than 100 accounts they are linked to.

The reason why many people underestimate the number of accounts they have is that they are making the simple mistake of using the same/ similar passwords for all of them. Thus, they can always log in with the password they remember.

The problem here is in two phases.

One – a password you can remember is also a password a hacker can guess. From numerous data breaches, hackers have used the leaked passwords to train their algorithms to better predict your password model.
Billions of other users are also like you, all wanting to remember their passwords. That suddenly makes it easy to expose your password in no time.

Two – an attack on one of your accounts could easily spill into the other accounts. Since you are using the same/ similar passwords, the hacker needs only try the password again or use it as a model for their next hack to expose all of your details.

Large companies keep my passwords safe

The real thought should be that ‘large companies do all they can to keep your passwords safe.’ Because let’s face it – they are the biggest targets in any hack.

After all, they have a huge database of passwords in their storeroom, and a hacker would love nothing more than to lay their hands on such data.

That explains why a Yahoo hack in 2016 laid as much as 3 billion accounts to waste, stealing password and user data for as long as it must have been before Yahoo found out. The same can be said for the Uber hack, still in 2016, which claimed the records of no less than 57 million riders and drivers.

Final Words

Guilty of some of these misconceptions?

Fortunately, now is not the time to point fingers. It is, rather, a time of enlightenment.
Now that you know what you are getting wrong about passwords, this is the best time to apply fixes where need be.

That way, you can always be sure of giving any hacker that comes close to your account a good run for their money.

With a strong enough password, they would rather back off or find another way of getting into your accounts instead of not on your password’s watch.


Here Are A Couple of Things You’ve Been Getting Wrong About Passwords Here Are A Couple of Things You’ve Been Getting Wrong About Passwords Reviewed by Kola Oyewole on July 15, 2019 Rating: 5

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