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Secure Yourself this World Password Day

By: DT News Network
April, 30, 2019

World Password Day – which falls on the first Thursday of May – was created to raise awareness about the critical need for strong passwords. With increasingly sophisticated cyber-security threats and identity theft opportunities, maintaining strong and secure passwords are critical.

“If personal data is the valuables we keep in our homes, passwords are the locks we put on our doors and windows. You wouldn’t secure your front door with a flimsy lock, such as a combination lock that strangers could easily break in, nor would you leave the front door unlocked for anyone to walk in. Similarly, passwords shouldn’t be easily deciphered as the first line of digital defence for your accounts,” said Sim Beng Hai, Technical Education Manager, ESET Asia Pacific.

According to a Public Awareness Survey by the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore, Singaporeans were reported to have the worst cyber habits in South-east Asia, with only 14 per cent using different passwords for all their accounts. The survey also showed that one in three respondents continued to store their passwords in their computer; wrote them down; and used the same password for work and personal accounts.

Regionally, ESET’s Consumer Survey 2018 Report found that 33% of respondents keep all their accounts logged in on their desktops while 49% of respondents keep all their accounts logged in on their mobiles.

Even though World Password Day serves as an annual reminder, it still has not convinced the majority of online users to get with the times and strengthen their passwords. As personal data becomes increasingly important, strong passwords serve as the first line of digital defence.

This World Password Day, ESET encourages you to take a moment to go through some of these basic security tips:

  1. Give each account you have its own unique password – do not reuse any.
  2. When entering passwords into your devices, ensure that you check your surroundings for any prying eyes, especially if done in public.
  3. Make every password complex and strong. Combine upper case alphanumeric characters with lower case alphanumeric characters and symbols.
  4. Use a password manager to help you keep track of your newly created, strong, complex passwords so you don’t have to.
  5. If you hear there’s been a breach, be extra safe and take action right away to change your passwords.
  6. Use 2-factor authentication when applicable. This adds an additional layer of security, should your password be compromised.
  7. Never share your password with anyone.
  8. When selecting security questions while creating an account, choose hard-to-guess options to which only you know the answer.
  9. Spread the word to your friends and family to protect themselves too.

“Password management shouldn’t be an annual affair, especially with the level of sophistication which cyber-security threats have evolved to. Consumers should make it a habit to refresh their account passwords from time-to-time, to ensure the safety of their personal information,” added Beng Hai.

 

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