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Strong Passwords

Create Strong, Memorable Passwords

  1. Think of several random words that are at least 4 characters long.
  2. Does the system allow special characters like a space?
  3. String the random words into a small sentence like "Desk happy computer."
  4. Notice the capital and period at the end. Along with the spaces and length this makes for a strong and memorable password.
  • Password should be at least 8 characters long.
  • Password should contain at least most of the following: number, lowercase alphabet, uppercase alphabet, special character.
  • The longer a password is, the harder it is to guess. A big part of password strength is length.

Avoid these Password Strategies

  • Do not use your login name.
  • Do not use a single dictionary word.
    • Do not use a single dictionary word backwards
    • Do not use a single dictionary word with a number at the beginning or end.
  • Do not use names or proper names or media characters that mean something to you or that you've used in secret questions.
  • Do not use any information easily obtained about you:  phone number, license number, address, place of work, college, etc...
  • Do not use birthdates.
  • Do not use only numbers.
  • Avoid sequences or repeated characters.  "12345678", "222222", 'abcdefg", "asdfjkl;"
  • Avoid using only look-alike substitutions of numbers or symbols.  "MIcr0$0ft", "P@ssw0rd"
  • Avoid using the same password everywhere.
  • Do not place password on sticky note under the keyboard (or elsewhere).

Keep your Password Secret

  • Do not reveal to others.
  • Protect any recorded passwords.
  • Never provide your password over email or based on an e-mail request.
  • Change your passwords at least once a semester.
  • Do not type passwords on computers that you do not control (trust).
  • Only enter passwords into secure sites and authentic sites.
Document author:
Last modified:
Sep 16, 2013