Choosing a Good Password

Passwords are your first line of defense. Even the best encryption sometimes cannot protect you against attacks if you've chosen a password that is easy to guess or crack.

Top Ten Tips

  1. Use a mnemonic, such as the first letter of a song verse or a phrase, while adding in numbers, symbols ($,%,*), and UPPER/lower case letters to help you remember that complicated password you just created. An example of a password could be "H1t@b1t?" as a result of the Pink Floyd lyric "Hello is there anybody in there". Here the letter "i" becomes a number 1, the letter "t" could be the letter or the plus "+" sign, the letter "a" becomes the @ sign and a punctuation symbol added to the end.

  2. If it’s in any dictionary – it’s a bad password: don't use it!

  3. Never use names as a password.

  4. Select a password that is a minimum of eight characters (preferably more) in length.

  5. Change your password often!

  6. Never write down a password and never share accounts.

  7. Do not give your password to anyone, not even the Helpdesk!

  8. Never share or grant access to your account to anyone.

  9. Never use your VSU ID or password for non-VSU systems.

  10. Avoid choosing the “save my password / remember my password” option in Internet browsers and desktop applications like Microsoft Outlook.

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