Creating Passwords

Features of a Strong Password:

  • Make it lengthy. Passwords should be 8 or more characters. Every additional character increases the protection.
  • Combine letters, numbers and symbols.
  • Use words or phrases that are easy to remember.

How to create a Strong Password in 4 easy steps:

  • Think of a sentence that you can remember. Use a memorable sentence, such as “I was twenty five when I was married in November”
  • Check if the computer or online system supports the pass phrase directly. If you can use a pass phrase with spaces between characters, do so.
  • If the computer or online system does not support pass phrases, convert it into a password. Take the first letter of each word of the phrase and create a new nonsensical word. Using the example above, the password is: “iwtfwiwmin”.
  • Add complexity. Mix uppercase and lowercase letters and numbers, use special characters. It is also valuable to misspell words and use some letter swapping. For example, the pass phrase above maybe, “1 was 20 Five when 1 w#s m#33ied in N0v@mbr” This might yield a password like “1w20Fw1wmi&”.

Test your Password

This article is based on information located on the Microsoft website. In addition Microsoft provides a non-recording feature to help determine your password’s strength www.microsoft.com/protect/yourself/password/checker.mspx.

Documenting your Password

The dilemma we all face is whether or not we should keep a written record of our passwords. Ask yourself the following question, if something happened to me, would my executor need my password(s) to take care of my affairs? If a written record of your passwords is required, place the document with your passwords in a sealed envelope and store them in your Vital Records PortaVault. Be sure to inform your executor of this document as well as the location of your PortaVault.

Product Update

The Vital Record PortaVault includes four Family Communication Plan cards. These cards provide a place to write contact phone numbers and meeting places. The card can be folded in half, making it the size of a credit card so it is easily stored in a wallet. Consider laminating the card to preserve the information and to minimize the risk of your child losing the card, punch a hole in the laminated card and pin it inside your child’s backpack.