How to Create Secure Passwords part 2: Extreme Security

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This is part 2 series about creating more secure passwords. Don’t create a million passwords you can’t remember. Instead create 3 or 4 passwords you can use over and over again. Then instead of sacrificing security by keeping passwords written down you can instead write down the site names and reuse the same secure passwords. This edition will focus on creating our most secure password for use with online banking, stock broking, or any money matters.

Things You’ll Need:
* a piece of paper to figure out your passwords

Step 1)  Find a phrase you like and can easily remember. In order to create our secure passwords we will use a phrase instead of a word. Words are easily found by dictionary attacks. For all of our passwords we will reuse the same phrase but just do things a little differently. *For this article and all articles in the series I will be using “the earth was a formless void” as my phrase. For your benefit please find your own phrase rather than using this one.

Step 2)  Now choose a pattern of letters from here. It could be the first letter of every word, the first two words, the two nouns….it doesn’t matter what so long as you can easily remember it. For instance “earthvoid”

Step 3)  Our goal is to take what we have now and make it 12 characters in length. If you have MORE than twelve characters just remove the unnecessary characters. If you do NOT have 12 characters from step 2 then add a separator between your words. “Earth.Void” Still not 12 characters so add some other easy fluff “1Earth.Void1” I used the number 1 to enclose…numbers are good choices only because often password checkers search for the use of at least 3 numbers within a password.

Step 4)  Replace select letters with special characters as in the picture. I will leave the capital E and V in place as letters just to increase the usage of unique characters. Now our password becomes something more like “1E@r+#.V0!d1

Step 5)  The above is our finished password: I would like to further explain some of the purposes in our actions, though. A strictly numeric password at 12 characters length would render 1,000,000,000,000 possible combinations. There are 4,738,381,338,321,616,896 once we add in alphabetic and numeric combinations. This makes special characters seem less necessary but these large potentials can become easily cut down by someone seeing your password being typed. The use of special characters therefore has a couple of benefits in the fact that it A.) it increases our potential combination count to 30,129,469,486,639,681,536 with just the 4 unique special characters we added here AND B.) The human mind can more easily remember words than it can seemingly random characters: It is much easier to remember “iwasborn1979” than “!w@5b0rn1979

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