Strong Passwords – The Importance In The Workplace And How To Create One
Imagine a hacker can access your business data or customer information because one of your employees set qwerty12345 as the password for their email or CRM platform. Terrible consequences may follow. Creating strong passwords is critical in this day and age especially for businesses to protect themselves from cybercriminals.
If your employees haven’t been trained on the importance of strong passwords in the workplace and how to create one, this article is for you and your team.
Why the need for strong passwords?
Passwords are needed almost for every aspect of your business. You have important information about your customers, company, finance, projects, and other such highly confidential matters that need to be protected. Here is what can happen if you don’t take proper precautions:
- Anyone can access your data and information, leading to a leak of important company and customer data
- You can end up losing funds as a breach can enable hackers to manipulate your funds, leading to heavy financial loss
- Lastly, all these can lead to a loss of reputation. With a loss of data and funds, your customers and potential customers will find it hard to have faith in your business again. This can lead to a huge blow to your business.
Passwords are the bare minimum protection that any small business cybersecurity could opt for. Lack of trained IT personnel and limited technological backing can add more fire to the loss. That is more the reason why small businesses should have strong passwords to protect their data.
While it may be convenient to have a small password that is easy to remember, it can be simple to hack and discover. That is why you need to build strong passwords which are unbreakable, yet easy for your team members to remember.
How to create a strong password?
We shall now move on to how you can create a strong password, which, by the way is not rocket science. Following are the tips and tricks to ensure that your password is a strong and hefty one, that neither can be cracked easily nor can be guessed.
Tip 1: Do not use your personal information
The first and the most important tip is not to use your personal information as your password. Typical examples would be your name, address, birth date, email address, name of any family member, and so on. These are the easiest things to guess when it comes to cracking passwords. If your password is similar to johndoe12091988, change it immediately.
Tip 2: Make it complicated with characters
Your password needs to be strong and something that nobody could figure out easily. One of the best ways of doing that is to use different characters.
Be innovative and use characters such as signs and symbols. You may even use a mix of upper and lower-case alphabets. For example, instead of using jackswayer, use J@ck_5WayER.
Tip 3: The longer the better
Generally, strong passwords are the ones that are at least six characters long. However, you can amp up your password strength by making it longer than that. You can use the sentence method here, where you come up with a random sentence and use only the first two letters of every word. For example, ‘The Seven Knight is a good inn’ can become ‘Th$eKnisagooin’.
Tip 4: Do not repeat passwords
Fine, you have come up with a password that is long and has a mix of characters. You are confident that you can use it anywhere and never be exposed to the risk of hacking.
We advise you to not do it. No matter how well constructed your password is, using the same password everywhere is like creating a strong master key. It may be strong, but it can grant access to all your accounts, making all of them vulnerable.
Therefore, make a habit to make different passwords for different cases, and make sure to share it only with the relevant team members.
Tip 5: Avoid using common words
You can go ahead and try creating your own words for your passwords. The more uncommon the word is, the stronger your password will be and the safer your data will stay. The more random the password is, the better. You may even use a password generator to come up with your unique password.
For small businesses, creating a strong password can safeguard against all risks. If you wish to learn more about protecting your business from cybercriminals, ITEK has released the Small Business Cybersecurity 2021 Handbook that covers the current common threats and the best cybersecurity practices. You can download for free here!