Guide to hard to crack and easy to remember passwords

Passwords are the most important strings of symbols and letters there is. They guard personal information, business secrets, correspondence, our files, etc. Many people make some of the following mistakes:

  • Using the same password everywhere
  • Picking a simple password (even worse if it’s just a word)

Why words should be avoided? The reason is, most types of hacking, including brute-force (trying different password until successful, or until locked out of the system), use the so-called dictionaries, which consist of words and various ways of writing them — using 5 instead of S and other possible variations.

What is the better alternative then? What I found works best is creating a framework for your passwords. They should have something in common, yet be different and easy to remember.

Let’s walk over the process of creating such passwords:

  1. Pick the common part — in this example I’ll be using song of one of my favorite bands — Five Finger Death Punch’s “Stranger than fiction”. Let’s pick the first letters and replace one of them with a number. We get 5tF.
  2. Afterwards pick some numbers and a symbol — in our example we’ll be using 77!. We get 5tF77!, which will be the common part.
  3. Say we want to change our Facebook password. This third and last step is best connected to the particular service. For Facebook, we’ll choose the letters Faebk. Replace some of the letters with a number and add random capitalization f43BK.
  4. Combine the common part with the service-specific one. The result is 5tF77!f43BK. Congratulations — you’ve got a password framework with hard to crack and easy to remember passwords.

Additional tip — if the service offers two-factor authentication, make sure it’s turned on. Stay safe, be a hard to crack target and remember your passwords.

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