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Password…is not a good password

By Mark Molzen

We live in a password-driven world. Passwords protect our finances, e-mail, computers, and even mobile devices. However, in the name of simplicity, we often choose either weak passwords or use the same passwords for every site we visit. This may be convenient, but it also opens us up to being hacked. Once a hacker has a single password, they have access to every site you visit. Above and beyond using different passwords for each site, there are a few simple rules to follow for creating a strong password:

• Passwords should be at least 10-12 characters in length and should not contain words found in the dictionary. A common password mistake is to replace letters in common words with numbers, such as substituting a zero for an “o” or the number three for an “e.”

• A good way to create strong passwords is to use the first letter in each word of a phrase you can easily remember. For example: I love to have my mother watch the kids for the weekend! The password could be: 1lthmmwtkftW!

This is a very strong password that someone can remember by repeating the phrase. It is important to have both upper and lower case letters along with numbers and symbols for a strong password.

For additional tips on Internet security, feel free to visit http://news.centurylink.com/resources/tips/centurylink-consumer-security-tips-online-security

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