How To Create A Strong Password

Almost every account created online requires users to create strong passwords. To come up with a password that people cannot easily figure out requires some tricks and knowledge.

Hackers these days take advantage of weak passwords to get into accounts before sharing the information they get with the public or blackmailing institutions and individuals.

When creating passwords online, some sites will inform you whether your password is strong enough or not while some sites fail to inform you about this.

The secret to a strong password is to include both letters, numbers and symbols in your password. A long password with symbols, letters and numbers is safe and cannot be figured out easily by someone else.

While it is not safe to use the same password across all your accounts, it is also advisable to ensure that whatever password you create, it should have letters, symbols and numbers. It should as well have at-least 12 characters.

If you use the same email address across your online accounts, you should ensure that your passwords are different, easy to remember and strong enough.

The moment you create a strong and long passwords, it makes it completely hard for hackers to crack it.

What hackers normally do when cracking passwords online, they go for easy targets. The easy targets are those accounts with weak passwords that will not take a lot of time figuring out or cracking.

For instance, you should avoid creating a password which bears your names and birthdates or names of your family members.

When creating a password, the more you include symbols, numbers and letters, the more it becomes strong and makes it challenging for anyone who would want to crack it.

THE SECRET

When creating a password, stick to a password that will be hard to guess but easy to remember.

If there is a phrase that looks odd but makes sense to you then add some number(s) and symbols you can easily remember next time you log in to your account.

Use phrases that you can easily associate to some websites and add numbers and symbols that you can remember. If you have different online accounts but want to use different passwords for these sites, you can have passwords that have common elements but some letters customized to specific sites where you have an account.

Another thing to note when creating a password is to avoid coming up with a random password that you’ll not be able to remember next time you want to log in.

If you have to create a random password then it should be a password with phrases that have a meaning to you.

 Creating strong passwords.

There are different methods of creating a strong password.

Bruce Schneier’s Method

Bruce is a security expert who came up with a password creation method that ensures creation of a strong password that cannot be figured out easily but also easy to remember.

His method is easy as he recommends taking a sentence that makes sense and turning it into a password.

According to Bruce, the sentence one transforms into a password should be a phrase easy to remember or memorable. After coming up with a phrase, abbreviate it and combine it with numbers and symbols uniquely. Here is an example of a Bruce Schneier’s password:

WOO!RBwontAC = Woohoo! Red Bulls won the Association Cup

The secret is to choose a phrase you can easily remember and turn into your password by abbreviating and inserting symbols.

The other methods of creating a strong password include, Phonetic Muscle Memory, PAO Method and Electrum Method.

These methods involve different strategies you can use to create a password that can be easy to remember but hard to guess.

Instead of waiting for that nasty time when some hacker somewhere cracks your weak password it is better to take your time now and come up with a memorable phrase, add some symbols and numbers to have a strong password.

Don’t wait for your password to be hacked and your information shared to the public instead of using the strategies discussed here on how to create strong passwords that are hard to guess but easy to remember.

 

Can Government Protect Your Internet Privacy?

You are not the only one worried and concerned about your internet privacy. Many people are concerned about whether the government is doing enough to protect their internet privacy.

A number of security breaches witnessed in government wings and several other corporations for the past one year are enough to scare individuals and question whether governments are doing enough to guarantee internet privacy.

Last month, there was a publication of a cache of confidential documents from the CIA and Wikileaks published them specifically to reveal CIA’s role in surveillance of people’s information online.

According to Wikileaks, CIA has ways and methods it uses in finding its way and hacking devices which are connected. Wikileaks also revealed that CIA has a way in which they compromise operating systems of devices including those of smartphones without informing the manufacturers about the loopholes.

This made some individuals and organization to ask for a response from the US governments. A director at Web Foundation (WF) went ahead to question whether the US government is doing enough to safeguard digital security and privacy of its citizens. According to Craig Fagan, a director at Web Foundation, the government puts users of the smartphones and devices at a risk of attacks from hackers by failing to inform the manufacturers of such devices about vulnerabilities and flaws in their devices.

A recent study found out that 60% of the people who were interviewed in the study have had their concern about internet privacy increase for the last one year.

More and more people are now worried and concerned about their privacy in the internet including their financial information.

The study revealed that a number of governments are not doing enough to ensure internet privacy of both their data and information of their citizens. This is what worries their citizens.

The fact that governments cannot protect themselves against hackers and leaking of sensitive information is enough to worry people about their personal information. If the government itself is not capable of safeguarding its own information what do you think can happen to vulnerable citizens who rely on the government and companies to keep their information safe and private?

It is not the first time studies revealed how people are complaining about current data privacy laws in a number of governments. According to many people measure taken by governments are not strong enough to protect internet users.

Many of those who were interviewed by one of the most famous data security company around the world revealed that the highest percentage of those interviewed are worried about their internet privacy and that their governments are not doing enough to ensure their protection.

About 20% of those who were interviewed by the security company have encountered their social media or email account hacked. Close to 20% of the interviewees also responded by saying that they may have encountered stolen information from credit cards by hackers.

So what is the role of the government in protecting people’s internet privacy?

Governments have a role to play when it comes to protecting its citizens’ internet privacy. For instance, governments should come up with strategies to on how the public should be educated on how to protect themselves against attacks online.

The other thing governments should do is to protect its infrastructure by coming up with laws that would require companies to disclose any potential security threats that it faces or its employees face. The same governments should also be good example by coming up with good security practices and clear process required to access personal information of their citizens.

The government should come up with regulations on how to protect people online but this should be done moderately in order to avoid serious consequences. Governments should avoid ignoring strategies they ought to come up with to protect people’s internet privacy.

The fact here remains that governments actually have a role to play in protecting people against internet security breaches but individuals also have to role to play too. For instance, see below how an individual can avoid internet security breach.

  • Creating strong password that are hard to guess but easy to remember
  • Avoid clicking on links that are sent by people you do not know especially on email
  • Avoid publicizing your donations to political outfits
  • Don’t fail to shred paper documents that have important information
  • Avoid being spotted in situations that are compromising
  • Failing to password protect your computers and other devices

As far as people continuously blame governments for failing to protect their internet privacy, individuals should comprehend that they also have a role to play to ensure that their online information remains safe.

In order to win back the trust of many online users, governments need to increase their internet mass surveillance investment. Technology moves very fast and that is the reason why governments need to come up with new strategies that are capable of curbing internet security breaches.

A number of business and individuals have started questioning the capability of their governments in protecting their internet privacy because it happens governments cannot protect themselves from online security breaches.

Global development largely relies on online economy. When people and businesses across the world start losing confidence and trust in the internet, the global economy is likely to suffer.

Instead of governments rushing to pass bills into laws expecting to curb online security breaches, they should first comprehend the fact that technology is advancing so fast and should instead come up with technically strong strategies that will outpace the rate at which technology is advancing.

According to Web Foundation, government should be able to come up with steps that will protect citizens online and also against overreach by security agencies. Apart from this, Web Foundation also urges companies to take actions and pressure governments to ensure that the necessary reforms are made. The companies should as well invest in safeguarding user’s information and coming up with a strategy on how to encrypt shared date from one device to the other automatically.

 

 

Unsecured Wi-Fi Hotspots: Why you should not connect

These days you can use your smartphone or tablet on the go with the freedom of using public or free Wi-Fi as many call it. However, it is very important to be cautious when using a free Wi-Fi Hotspot or avoid reconnecting completely due to the risks this comes with.

If you are this kind of a person who must always use free or public hotspot, you’ll definitely start taking necessary precautions after reading this article.

So here are the reasons why you should never connect to a free Wi-Fi hotspot.

  1. It is never safe

“Piggybacking” or connecting to a free Wi-Fi that does not require you to enter a WPA or WPA2 is the same as basically sharing your information with the public. This is what happens, if you connect to a free Wi-Fi and send any sensitive data over it, any person can grab your information and use it. So you should comprehend that the same thing that makes a public Wi-Fi Hot spot desirable to you also makes it desirable for people who can hack your device and use your sensitive information.

  1. Infection Risk

When using a free Wi-Fi hotspot also being used by an infected device, the malware in the device will try to use the network and penetrate to other devices also connected to the free Wi-Fi.

To avoid being attacked by the malware from a device connected to the same Wi-Fi your device is connected to, you should upgrade the antivirus software you use. You should ensure that your firewall is strong, up and running.

  1. Capture of Account Details/Logins

Let’s all face it, a number of applications on your device will try to send a number of your account details including passwords and usernames inform of clear text over a network. This therefore means any user trying to sniff their way into the network may get your usernames and passwords in plain text. You probably know what this means. If a stranger gets your account logins, they can use and access your account at any time.

  1. Be careful about “Honeypots”

“Honeypots” are basically fake free Wi-Fi Hotspots that are set up to attract different users to connect. What results after connecting to such Wi-Fi spots is stealing of information from your device. If you have to connect to a free Wi-Fi hotspot then you must first be sure that it is not fake. Don’t put yourself at a risk of having your information shared.

Try as much as possible only connect to trusted Wi-Fi hotspots. You should also ensure that you only use the latest anti-virus protection.

  1. Privacy

Anyone can use public or free Wi-Fi Hotspots. So whenever you are connected you should be aware of this. The cyberspace has all kinds of users and you never know who you are sharing the free Wi-Fi hotspot with.

If you get connected to a free Wi-Fi hotspot you put your information at a risk of being shared. Hackers usually take advantage of free Wi-Fi hotspots to attack those who are connected.

The reality here is therefore to avoid free Wi-Fi hotspots as much as possible so as to stay on the safe side. You never know when hackers will come calling on a network you are connected to.