Passwords…don’t you just love ‘em??? Ever forget a password? Ever feel your systems are less than secure? Passwords are a struggle for everyone—let’s face it, they are a burden! Yet they are a necessary burden; we could leave everything unsecured, but that is dangerous.

So, what to do???

One solution is to develop a personal system: a formula that you use to create passwords which can in turn be used to remember passwords.

For Example:

  1. Phrase – Choose a phrase such as tu+2 (skirt a ballerina might wear)
  2. Business – Determine a method to enter a unique character(s) for each web site such as the first and last letter of the business. Facebook = Fk, Kohls = Ks, Dell = Dl
  3. Date – Determine the additional character to use such as the last digit of the year and the number of the quarter (2012, 1st quarter could be 21)
  4. Assemble – Now put it together. Facebook is: tu+2Fk21
  5. Revise – Update your passwords quarterly. When you update to 2012, 2nd quarter the password would change to tu+2Fk22
  6. Renew – Change your password formula each calendar year to keep it fresh

Please don’t use this system verbatim. Create one that fits you and that only you know. No system is perfect. They are all a function of cost (password length, complexity, uniqueness, revision frequency) and benefit (the better the password, the more secure the system). Pick something that you feel is sufficiently secure.

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