Passwords

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  • When choosing passwords for random catalogs and webpages, choose 2 words and 2 numbers and always make your password a combination of the two. Ex.: rosey, shannon, 2, 3 -- your password will always be rosey23 or shannon32. This makes it a lot easier to guess at passwords when you return without having to keep a password text file. --kpearce 10:56, 27 Mar 2005 (EST)
    • That's a really bad idea, as passwords constructed like that are easy for others to guess as well. As a security professional, I recommend the following:
      1. choose one password for all sites that needn't be secure. No one can hurt you by getting into your Wiki account, and even if it has the same password as your Wikipedia acount, who cares?
      2. choose a better password for sort-of-secure sites. I do this with my "junk mail" e-mail addresses. Accounts where nothing truly important is stored (or accomplished), but would be an annoyance should get a better password, but can still share one. Try using a pattern like Adj, noise, noun: e.g. ugly#!2bunny.
      3. choose separate, excellent passwords for truly secure sites. Your online banking and PayPal accounts should have unique, secure passwords. Make them hard even for you to remember: I generate mine randomly and store them in [PasswordSafe] (free). Then I really only need to remember one. -- User:radiantmatrix
  • My favorite password-choosing system: rather than using actual words, pick a phrase that's easy to remember, and use the first letter of each word; eg, "Oh say can you see by the rocket's red glare" becomes "oscysbtrrg"--a string of character's that's as easy to remember as a word, and that is practically invulnerable to dictionary-based password cracking. the other nice thing about this approach is that its easily transferable; if you keep several passwords (as described above), you can use phrases that're connected. eg, "oh say can you see..." might be the password for your high-security acccounts, and "what so proudly we hail by the twilight's last gleaming" ("wspwhbttlg") might be the password for your sort-of-secure accounts, etc etc
  • Here's a quick and easy way to remember passwords, use something that you already have memorized that is impossible to trace. I use old phonenumbers as passwords. I can leave a post-it note in plain view that says, "Jay's phone #" to refer to a friend I had in High School or "Cottage Grove" to refer to the phone number I had growing up. It's easy to add an area code or initials of the state if I need a more complex password. --Yayabuddha 06:23, 26 Apr 2005
  • I like taking the method of using the first letter of each word from a song lyric or movie line. So lets take a line from Seinfeld. "These Pretzels Are Making Me Thirsty." That becomes tpammt. Then to make it specific for a website lets say google. lets mix the letters of google with that and it becomes tgpoaomgmlte. Then to make it a little bit harder, I like to do one of two things, replace the vowels with symbols (i.e. A=@, E=3, I=1,O=0, U=^), or capitalize, say every other letter, or every 3 letters, or whatver works for you, so the password will end up looking like tgp0@mgmlt3 of tgpOAOmgmLTE. The reason why I like to use a combination of these methods is because sometimes certain websites will limit the number of characters to 12 or not let you use certain symbols. So if you enter the wrong password you can figure out what you might have done. I will admit that I mostly use these passwords using a password manager. But I am able to recreate a password if I am out somewhere, it just takes a minute to figure out.
  • There are 2 great podcasts about passwords on the TWIT network (Twit.tv) on the security now podcast.
  • Mac users can use the Keychain Access application to manage groups of passwords with varying security settings.
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