Online security has never been more important, but many small businesses continue to overlook it. Today, we’re going to explore some simple password tips, which can save massive headaches for business owners.

Security breaches cause all kinds of serious problems for businesses. These range from reputational damage, to legal damages and fines.

Could you imagine the damage to your privacy or wallet if your social media or other online accounts were hacked? Or, even worse, have your accounts been hacked in the past and you now want to make sure you help keep them secure in the future?

While these are often overcomable, prevention is always the best strategy.

We’ll explain some easy password security steps you can take to protect yourself.

Password Security Tips
How Secure Is My Password | Online Security | Password Management | Password Security

Password Security Tips: The Essentials

Amazingly, there are still countless businesses and employees who use the same passwords across all of their accounts. Even those who vary their credentials mostly fail to use best practices for their passwords.

This makes them sitting ducks for security breaches.

The following are tips you should implement across your organisation to ensure the highest possible security standards are maintained. Crucially, you should ensure that all of your employees understand and act on these tips.

1. Include a Variety of Characters

Consider using numbers, symbols, capitals, and punctuation marks instead of only sticking to one form of characters. Vulnerable and weak passwords, which don’t incorporate different types of characters, can make your information and personal data vulnerable to hackers.

This is why some accounts require you to include at least one number, one uppercase letter, and sometimes one symbol. Doing so ensures the strength and security of passwords.

Applying this technique to all your passwords can be a really worthwhile decision. Lately, specialists are calling for “pass phrases” rather than trying to put together character-varied passwords.

For example: a password like “I<3$>thanI$hould” which reads “I love money more than I should.” is a good example of a fun, strong password with varied characters, that’s also easy to remember.

2. Go for Long Passwords

A lengthy password is usually safer than a complex one. Keeping your passwords above the 12 character range makes it harder for scammers and hackers to crack them.

So, you should combine long patterns and characters that are easy for you to recall, but not for others. Whether you choose to incorporate special dates, quotes, favourite movies, or books, you should always keep them lengthy.

For example, a password like “(2/10)@Clifford!fallinginlovewithyou” or “(10.88Iam30&:D)” – which says October 1988, I am 30 and happy – will serve you much better than a random string like “qlfnv.7409!@$?”.

The latter could be almost impossible to recall if you hadn’t logged in for a while. Plus, it’s clear that it’s nothing more than a number of characters put together with no special hint for anyone to remember.

Remember: lengthy and personalised is the perfect mix for great password security.

Password strength infographic
The right password will take billions of years to hack. Image credit: Hive Systems

3. Check Password Strength

Checking for password strength is a quick and simple, yet effective, way to ensure robust passwords. When signing up for new websites, some of them provide a password strength meter checker.

With marks ranging from red being the weakest, orange being medium, and green being the strongest, meters show your passwords’ level of complexity and strength.

In addition, you can easily use some websites to check your potential password’s strength.
You might want to check these secure password checkers like Kaspersky Lab or HOW SECURE IS MY PASSWORD.

Whatever you choose, if you’re seeking tips for password security, remember to mind and follow the suggestions from these tools.

4. Consider Logging out

We all know how tempting it is to click “Remember me” so a browser remembers your password and automatically signs you in every time you visit that website.

However, this means it will only take a few seconds for someone to access your information and data, or even change your password, if you’re ever away from your desktop.

The same goes with mobile applications that automatically save your password without even asking “remember me?” You just login once and you never have to worry about logging in again unless you go for a new mobile.

The “keep me signed in” box spares you having to remember a few characters, but leaves your security at risk. It takes time and practice to start logging out but it’s better to be safe than sorry!

Password Security Tips: Alternatives to Consider

Password Security / Fingerprint

1. Consider a Fingerprint

Typically, most people tend to secure their phones and desktops using either a pattern they draw or a numerical code. Luckily, the 21st century has brought many technological advances.

Today, most phones and laptops enable you to register fingerprints. A fingerprint pass is less likely to be hacked when compared to typical password security tips and typical passwords that could be guessed or cracked.

Still, you’ll need to log out from all your accounts before putting down your mobile or leaving your laptop.

2. Don’t Use One Password

The average person has more accounts than they could count on both hands. Whether email addresses, social media websites, or even business accounts, it is a tiresome to recall more than two or three passwords.

That said, it’s more likely than not that you access all these accounts using the same two or three passwords.

What you haven’t realised is that you have only made a hacker’s life much easier. In your case, with just a few passwords, breaching one account means breaching all your other accounts.

A good idea is to stick or write “hint notes” that don’t actually read your password, but just give you clues to recall your passwords. So, following the example above, your hint note can be “too much love!” for “I<3$$>thanI$hould”.

3. Don’t Share Your Password

This seems like a basic and logical password security tip, however people still fall right into this trap. Sometimes, protecting your security is going to be as simple as not sharing your password with anyone.

Your trusted person also has another trusted person. You don’t want your password ending up with someone who’d jump at any given opportunity to harm you – even if it were an accident.

4. Don’t Enter Your Password Just Anywhere

This point follows naturally. It’s important that you don’t enter any of your passwords on unknown computers or devices, just in case there is any malware software.

Even more, you should avoid entering your password when using unknown or unsecured internet connections. Scammers and hackers can easily breach your password and abuse your information over unsecure connections.

However, if you do use an unsecured computer or connection, change your password immediately afterwards. It’s also recommended that you change your passwords occasionally, while old passwords shouldn’t be reused for at least a year.

5. Consider a Multi-Factor Authenticator

Taking things a step further with a two-factor authentication is an extra security procedure, but certainly an adequate one. Authentication methods vary between setup software and hardware methods: basic (entry level) and cutting edge solutions.

One “entry level” way to do this is through SMS verification. This is an SMS sent to a registered phone with a code for the user to enter in order to verify his/her identity before being allowed to login.

Another way could be through software authentication methods like Google Authenticator application or 2FA for Apple iCloud. In addition, there is also hardware authentication using USB security keys like YubiKey.

Although SMS is more common, it’s still not perfect, since codes are only sent when logging from unknown devices.

6. Password Manager

Last, but definitely not the least, is one of the most functional password security tips – using a password manager. With the growing number of applications people sign up for, it has become almost impossible to keep track of all your passwords.

Fortunately, there are plenty of programs to help you create unique and robust passwords for all your accounts.

Instead of having to remember a dozen passwords for different accounts, they enable you to manage and access all your data using only one “master” password.

Some of these programs are cost-free like KeePass, but can only be accessed through desktop browsers. Others offer paid services that go as far as allowing access through mobile platforms making it more functional like LastPass and 1Password.

Password Security Tips

Technical Tips for Corporate Security

Cybersecurity threats lurk around every corner in today’s digital landscape, especially for businesses juggling sensitive data and operational continuity. While awareness training and strong password policies are crucial, corporate security demands robust technical measures to truly stand guard against increasingly sophisticated attacks. So, for IT security chiefs and risk management warriors, here’s a deep dive into the technical arsenal you need to wield:

1. Access Control: Granular Gates to Your Digital Kingdom

Imagine a castle with drawbridges, fortified walls, and vigilant guards – that’s the essence of access control. Implement multi-factor authentication (MFA) like SMS verification or biometric scans to go beyond mere passwords. Leverage role-based access control (RBAC) to grant permissions based on individual roles and responsibilities, minimizing the attack surface. Implement least-privilege access to restrict user access to only the data and systems they absolutely need. Remember, not all knights require full access to the royal treasury!

2. Data Encryption: Sealing the Secrets Tight

Think of data as the crown jewels of your digital kingdom. Encryption acts as an intricate vault, scrambling information into unreadable gibberish for unauthorized eyes. Implement data encryption at rest (protecting stored data) and in transit (securing data transfer), using robust algorithms like AES-256. Remember, even the most cunning thieves can’t decipher a coded treasure map!

3. Network Security: Building Moats and Watchtowers

Just like a medieval village surrounded by a moat, your network needs strong perimeters. Deploy firewalls to act as gatekeepers, filtering incoming and outgoing traffic based on pre-defined rules. Utilize intrusion detection and prevention systems (IDS/IPS) to scan for suspicious activity and proactively block potential threats. Segment your network to isolate critical systems and prevent lateral movement of attackers, making your digital landscape a maze they can’t easily navigate.

4. Endpoint Protection: Guarding Every Digital Outpost

Think of endpoints like laptops and mobile devices as the watchtowers of your corporate landscape. Secure them with endpoint protection platforms (EPPs) that combine antivirus, anti-malware, and application control to shield against malware, ransomware, and unauthorized software. Implement device encryption to protect data even if the device falls into the wrong hands. Remember, a single unguarded tower can bring down the entire castle!

5. Patch Management: Plugging the Holes Before the Arrows Fly

Software vulnerabilities are like cracks in the castle walls. Patch management diligently closes these gaps, promptly applying security updates to operating systems, applications, and firmware. Automate patching processes to minimize the window of vulnerability and ensure your digital fortress stays airtight. Remember, neglecting even a single crack can invite disaster!

6. Incident Response: A Well-Rehearsed Defense Plan

Even the most fortified castles can face breaches. Be prepared with a comprehensive incident response plan outlining steps to contain, identify, eradicate, and recover from security incidents. Regularly conduct simulations and training to ensure your team knows their roles and can respond swiftly and effectively. Remember, a well-rehearsed defense can turn the tide even against a surprise attack!

Bonus Tip: Continuous Monitoring and Threat Intelligence

Stay vigilant like a watchful falcon! Employ security information and event management (SIEM) tools to monitor logs and activities across your network for anomalies and suspicious behavior. Utilize threat intelligence feeds to stay informed about the latest cyber threats and vulnerabilities, adjusting your defenses accordingly. Remember, constant vigilance is key to preventing even the most cunning ambushes! For Mac OS users, learning how to run security check on mac can further bolster your defenses, ensuring your system is fortified against potential security breaches.

Exploring Password Manager Options and Pros/Cons

In the face of ever-present password risks, password managers (PMs) emerge as knights in shining armor. But with a plethora of options out there, choosing the right one can feel like wandering through a password-protected labyrinth. Here’s a breakdown of popular PMs and their key pros and cons to help you navigate the choices:

1. Freelancers and Budget-Conscious Users:

  • LastPass: Free tier offers generous features like unlimited passwords, cross-platform compatibility, and secure sharing. However, its premium features cost extra and some data breaches raise concerns.
  • KeePass: Open-source and highly customizable, with strong encryption and local storage. But, its user interface can be daunting for less tech-savvy users, and lack of mobile-first design might be a drawback.

2. Power Users and Security Enthusiasts:

  • 1Password: Intuitive interface, family plans, robust security features like travel mode and breach alerts. However, its subscription might be steeper than some competitors.
  • Bitwarden: Open-source with strong security features, zero-knowledge architecture, and built-in password generator. Offers generous family plans, but its password sharing functionalities might be less intuitive compared to others.

3. Business-Focused Solutions:

  • Dashlane: Team plans with centralized admin control, audit trails, and compliance features. But, its individual plan limitations and pricing might discourage individual users.
  • Keeper: Offers enterprise-grade security with breach monitoring, dark web scanning, and secure file storage. However, its focus on business solutions might not cater to individual needs as well.

Important Pros & Cons to Consider:


  • Strong password generation and management: Avoid weak passwords and reuse.
  • Improved security: Encryption and multi-factor authentication protect your data.
  • Convenience: Autofill saves time and reduces typos.
  • Organization: Keep passwords stored and synced across devices.


  • Single point of failure: If breached, all passwords could be compromised.
  • Vendor dependence: Relying on a third-party for your passwords.
  • Potential learning curve: Mastering new features and interfaces.
  • Subscription fees: Most PMs require paid plans for full functionality.


  • Choose a PM with a strong reputation and proven security track record.
  • Look for features that match your needs and budget.
  • Use strong master passwords and enable multi-factor authentication.
  • Back up your PM data regularly for added security.

With careful consideration and these insights, you can confidently choose the perfect password manager to navigate the digital labyrinth and keep your online life secure.

Bonus Tip: Consider experimenting with different PMs to find the one that suits your workflow and preferences the best. Many offer free trials to let you test the waters before diving in.

Password Risks:

  • Breaches: 80% of data breaches involve weak passwords, according to Verizon’s 2023 Data Breach Investigations Report.
  • Re-use: 57% of users reuse passwords across multiple accounts despite the dangers of domino effect breaches. (NordPass, 2023)
  • Dictionary words: 32% of the most common passwords worldwide are dictionary words or simple letter/number combinations, easily cracked by bots. (SplashData, 2023)
  • Credential stuffing: Credential stuffing attacks, using stolen passwords across different websites, have increased 83% in 2023. (Cybersecurity Insights, 2023)

Password Trends:

  • Multi-factor authentication (MFA): Adoption of MFA is growing, with 61% of organizations globally now requiring it for remote access, according to Microsoft’s 2023 Security Signals Report.
  • Passphrase adoption: Users are moving towards longer, more complex passphrases instead of single words, improving security. (Google Password Security Report, 2023)
  • Biometric authentication: Biometrics like fingerprints and facial recognition are gaining traction, offering a more secure and convenient alternative to passwords. (Juniper Threat Labs Report, 2023)
  • Passwordless authentication: Technologies like FIDO2 and WebAuthn are emerging to eliminate passwords altogether, offering even stronger security. (NIST Digital Identity Guidelines, 2023)

Expert Sources:

  • National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST): Provides cybersecurity guidelines and best practices, including password recommendations.
  • Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA): Offers resources and advice on password security for businesses and individuals.
  • OWASP Password Best Practices: A comprehensive guide to secure password management practices.
  • The SANS Institute: A leading cybersecurity training and certification organization with in-depth resources on password security.
  • Bruce Schneier: A renowned cryptographer and security expert with insightful blogs and articles on password security.
  • Marc Stevens: A cryptography researcher and founder of password security company Password Haystack.
  • Jeremiah Grossman: Founder of WhiteHat Security and contributor to password security research.

Frequently Asked Questions About Password Managers

Q: What are the risks of not using a password manager?

A: Not using a password manager leaves you vulnerable to several risks, including:

  • Weak passwords: You may reuse passwords or create weak ones, making them easy to crack.
  • Data breaches: Your passwords could be exposed in a data breach, putting all your accounts at risk.
  • Phishing attacks: You may fall victim to phishing scams if you’re not using a secure password manager.

Q: Are password managers safe?

A: Reputable password managers use strong encryption and security features to protect your data. However, it’s crucial to choose a PM with a good track record and enable multi-factor authentication for additional security.

Q: What happens if I forget my master password?

A: Most password managers offer recovery options, such as backup passwords or security questions. However, losing your master password can be a challenge, so choose one you can remember or store securely.

Q: Can I use a free password manager?

A: Yes, many free password managers offer basic features like secure storage and autofill. However, paid plans usually offer more features, like unlimited passwords, dark web monitoring, and family plans.

Q: Which password manager is the best?

A: The “best” password manager depends on your individual needs and preferences. Consider factors like security features, budget, user interface, and desired features when making your choice.

Summary: Is Your Security An Invitation?

Everyone is, sadly, prone to hacking. This means that lax password security is like leaving an open wallet lying around. In this day and age, there is really no excuse for sloppy password management.

Simple steps can help deter theft. To that end, follow these password security tips to ensure the security of your business, your employees, and your customers. Make them part of your routine today plus keep in touch with the latest methods, and you can enjoy the benefits for a lifetime.

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