Managing a passel of passwords

Like it or not, passwords are an inescapable part of modern life, providing protection at the cost of inconvenience.



It’s a natural tendency for people to try and keep things simple by using the same password for multiple services or devices.  But as recent headlines have made clear, no site is completely safe from break-ins and the username and password you used at site X, Y, and Z may go on sale to the highest bidder without your knowledge at any time.

Experts agree that having different passwords for every site is the best defense against having your accounts broken into……but managing lots of accounts can be a real challenge.

Here are some resources with practical advice on how to create, use and manage passwords.

One way to create a memorable, strong password:

  1. Start with a phrase you’re likely to remember.  Here are a few examples:
    1. “I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him”
    2. “Fifteen men on a dead man’s chest, Yo Ho Ho”
    3. “Climb High, Climb Far, Your Goal the Sky, Your Aim the Star”
  2. Use the first letters of each word (and punctuation) in the phrase to create a basic password:
    1. IctbC,ntph
    2. Fmoadmc,YHH
    3. CH,CF,YGtS,YAtS
  3. Since many sites require at least one numeric digit, special character or mixed case letter to increase the difficulty of cracking a password with brute force, you may have to tweak it slightly:
    1. IctbC,n2ph
    2. 15moadmc,YHH
    3. CH,C4,YGtS,YAtS

Or use a somewhat nonsensical passphrase: