You hear all the time about identity theft and online fraud.  But you think you’re not at risk, right? Think again. Identity theft is one of the fastest growing Internet crimes!  The easiest way to protect yourself from identity theft is with a strong password.  You have one of those, right?

The best passwords, according to Microsoft, follow these five steps:

  • Don’t be complacent and use things like 12345, or something similar in a password.
  • Know what makes a bad password. Using your name or the names of a spouse or children makes it easier for hackers to break your password.  You also shouldn’t use words that can be found in the dictionary, even foreign ones.
  • Become proficient at creating good passwords.
  • Keep your password to yourself.
  • Change your password often, multiple times a year.

You still might be thinking, “my password is a good one.” If you really want to know just how secure your password is, visit this site. It will tell you just how fast a personal computer could hack a password. By all means, don’t use an actual password you use, but a similar one to give you an idea of how vulnerable you may be.

This writer’s favorite password, one he’s been using for years, could’ve been cracked in 52 seconds! Time for a new password!