The other day a conversation I had with my brother was about how many years ago I managed to get access to his Facebook account and that was without knowing his password. Quite apt that this conversation came up and then just a few days later the creator and founder of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg has his own social media accounts compromised by hackers.
The way I got into my brothers account was different to how these hackers gained access to Zuckerberg’s, I simply knew where our mum was born and easily reset his password and boom, his email was accessible and then his Facebook password was reset. Not everyone could know this information but 9 times out of 10 it is easily accessible information either from certain websites or even your own Facebook profile.
Here is how you can keep your account more secure:
- Do not use the same password twice. Regardless of how secure your one password is, once it’s been cracked it can be done again.
- Use numbers and special characters to make up your password. The more numbers and special characters you have the harder it is to crack your password.
- Make your password longer than 8 characters
There are a variety of security questions to choose from when registering on a website; name of your first pet, your favourite book, your mothers maiden name and many others. The security of these questions rely on how much information you have on your social media accounts and the type of answer you give.
Here are examples of good and bad security question answers:
Bad = Mothers birthplace – London Good = Mothers birthplace L0nd0n250368
Bad = First pet – Dotty Good = First pet – d0tty2012!
(The O’s in both of the ‘Good’ examples are actually zeros) Change letters for numbers or special characters you could also add numbers at the end.
If you have a tendency to forget passwords do not fall into the trap of just using one. Create a handwritten log of them, keep a piece of paper under your pillow or just stick to them to inside of the laundry cupboard. Do not use just one.