Cybersecurity Awareness Month – Passwords and Password Manager

This week’s post for Cybersecurity Awareness Month covers habits relating to passwords and password managers. To be cybersecure:

1. Create passwords with these three principles

  • Long – All passwords should be at least 12 characters long.
  • Unique – Never reuse passwords and create unique passwords for each account.
  • Complex – Use a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and special characters.

Remembering passwords and following these principles may sound hard, but there’s a better way…

2. Use a Password Manager

Password managers make it easy to use passwords that are long, unique, and complex. They save time, work across all your devices and operating systems, and can alert you when a password has become compromised. Visit the National Cybersecurity Alliance password managers page for more information including password manager options you can use to be more secure.

3. Know When to Change your Password

As reported by the National Institute of Standards and Technology it is no longer recommended to change your passwords every few months. For personal accounts we recommend focusing on creating long, unique, and complex passwords. Should you become aware that an unauthorized person is accessing an account or a password was compromised in a data breach, change your password immediately. Please note that as part of our process at Kalamazoo College, we require users to change your KNET password periodically; however, there may be a change to this process in the future.

The information on this page was adapted from the National Cybersecurity Alliance’s passwords and NCSAs password manager page.

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