A strong password is your first defense!

Here are 8 tips you should keep in mind about password safety.

  1. Make your password longer. Longer passwords are harder for thieves to crack. It is recommended that all passwords should be over 8 characters long.
  2. Do not share your password. Never give out your password to friends, even if they’re close friends. They could accidentally pass your password on to others you do not have trust in.
  3. Use different passwords for different accounts. It’s very possible for someone to gain access to one of your accounts. If this happens, they will try to use that password to access all of your accounts. Decrease your vulnerability by using multiple passwords. If you find it difficult to keep track of multiple passwords, write them down and store in a safe place, like a vault/safe, or consider using a password manager software program.
  4. Create passwords that are easy to remember but hard for others. Whenever possible, try to use a phrase that is close to your heart. Something like  “I loved hunting in Washington State in 2016”. Now create your password from the initials of each word like this: “ILoveHWAS16.” Try to make it different and unique to decrease hacking.
  5. Mix up your passwords with symbols. Make your password even stronger by considering to use multiple symbols in your password. For example, use a $ instead of an S or a 1 instead of a lower case “L”. Even try to add an & or %. Example “ILoveH&FWA$16.” This phrase would be, I love Hunting and Fishing in Washington State in 2016″.
  6. Always update software. Software programs are always sending update notices. Do not procrastinate, updated them asap. These updates are normally security improvements.
  7. Don’t post your login on a sticky note. Have you ever noticed that some people put sticky notes with passwords on their computers monitor? DO NOT DO THIS! Write it down and keep it where know one can find it, or have access to.
  8. Don’t fall for “phishing”. Approach your email with skepticism and be very cautious about clicking on a link asking you to log in, change your password or provide personal information.  Rather than clicking on embedded links, copy and paste them into a browser window, which will let you better see where you’re headed. Never click on attachments that seem suspicious, even if you do know the sender. It might be legitimate or it might be a “phishing” scam where the information you enter goes to a hacker. When in doubt, log on manually by typing what you know to be the site’s URL into your browser window.