Good password guidelines – Quick Info

What are the characteristics of a good password and how do you create good ones you can remember? – Here’s some quick info on good passwords.

  • Good passwords are actually “passphrases”, as these are easier to remember.
  • Good passwords are 15-25 characters long…really!
  • Good passwords use spaces (if allowed) and numbers and symbols, but not to excess.
  • Good passwords do NOT include any part of your username, real name, pet’s names, children’s names, address, phone number, mother’s maiden name, etc.
  • Good passwords are NOT sequences of numbers or letters, “password”, or obvious options.
  • Good passwords are phrases, but not common phrases. Don’t use common lines from well known poems, books, movies or shows.
  • Envision a picture in your head that you can easily recall, real or imagined. Use the items in that picture to create a phrase. If you envisioned a horse in a field carrying a female rider with long flowing hair under a ten-gallon hat your password could be “Horse-Field-Cowgirl-Ride!” which is 24 characters long, includes capital letters and a symbol. This is a good password. Now don’t use that password!!!
  • Password managers can create long, random passwords for your accounts and help you enter those passwords when you need to access the accounts. This will reduce your need to come up with multiple long passphrases like the example above. You’ll just need one for the password manager itself.

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