Cybersecurity is a huge focus for those of us in the computer repair industry. We do our best to protect our clients! Despite those efforts, we still see some common pitfalls that undermine our cybersecurity efforts. This ultimately results in security being compromised and potential data/identify theft or even financial loss.

Check out our list below and make sure you’re not doing any of these.

Passwords

A few weeks ago, Facebook left millions of passwords in plain text and available to be read by employees. This means that no matter how strong your password was, it could have easily been copied and pasted, scratched on a sticky note, or memorized by those who had access to it. Sometimes access to our passwords are out of our control. This is why it is important to use many different passwords. If one is compromised, at least the breach remains limited to that single event and you don’t lose security on the rest of your accounts.

Not secure enough

Simple passwords are the crux of cybersecurity. You’ve probably noticed that companies are requiring more complex passwords from you. A simple passwords like “password” or “apple” or “abcd” or “1234” or “asdf” are just too easy to guess. You don’t even need a computer program to hack it. A 5 year old could crack those passwords. Even important dates or names of family members allow for easy guesses.

Too Secure

It is also possible for a password to be too secure. Using random password generators or building your own random password using all types of characters and with no memorable pattern will be the best way to keep people out. But what happens if you lose access to that password? In that case you have effectively locked yourself out with no way in. Even computer repair experts won’t be able to help you with this.

Some companies will give you a “forgot password” option, but sometimes that’s just not available. In this case you’ve made it too secure.

Just Right

Let us suggest that you have a good middle ground. You don’t want a password that is too easy to guess. You also don’t want a complicated password being discovered on a sticky note or a text document on your computer. And you don’t want to lose your password so you can’t retrieve it.

First try creating a password that is memorable but not easy to guess. Use a word or two with random capitalization and some special characters in place of some of the letters. (ex: “bLack_7abLe”) Another option would be to create a phrase that you can remember, using capitalization and punctuation. (ex: “My_password_is_secure_enough!”)

It’s not a bad idea to use random passwords. If you are going to do this, don’t write down your passwords on a sticky note. Use an encrypted program that can keep your passwords secure. We’ve had a lot of success with Last Pass. There are many others out there, be sure they are secure and don’t put you at risk.