Strong Passwords: 10 Tips for Creating Secure Ones

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By Hiba Akbar

In the face of escalating cyber threats, safeguarding our online accounts has never been more critical. According to Verizon’s Data Breach Index Report, a staggering 80% of successful data breaches stem from compromised login credentials, highlighting the pressing need for strong password security. 

Astonishingly, 64% of individuals resort to weak passwords or their variations, rendering their online presence susceptible to malicious attacks. 

This article will define what strong passwords are and their importance. Furthermore, it provides 10 essential tips for creating secure ones, empowering readers to safeguard their digital lives effectively. 

What are Strong Passwords?

A strong password is intentionally difficult for humans and programs to guess, reducing cyber security risks. With modern computing power, short passwords are easily cracked. 

To combat this, robust passwords include uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols exceeding 12 characters for optimal security. Lengthier passwords enhance protection against evolving hacker techniques, ensuring authorized access and safeguarding sensitive resources.

Significance of Having Strong Passwords

In this digital era, the importance of strong passwords cannot be emphasized enough. Shockingly, 75% of individuals worldwide neglect widely accepted password best practices, making them susceptible to cyber threats. 


Weak, repeated passwords are a breeding ground for hacking, leading to potential data loss, financial ruin, and compromised privacy. Failing to prioritize password security can result in severe consequences, including data breaches, identity theft, and computer hijacking.

Cybercrimes drained nearly $4.2 billion from U.S. businesses and individuals in the past year. This jeopardizes personal and customer cybersecurity, causing financial havoc. Strong password practices are essential, fortifying individuals and businesses against online threats and serving as a defense against escalating cybercrimes and their devastating consequences.

Types of Password Security Threats

Weak passwords pose significant risks, providing hackers with various entry points. Explore these password security threats to safeguard your online presence;

1. Dictionary-based Attacks: Hackers use dictionaries of common words to crack passwords by trying every word in the list until the correct one is found.

2. Phishing Attack: Cybercriminals impersonate trusted entities, tricking users into revealing sensitive information, often login credentials, by posing as legitimate sources via email or website.

3. Keylogging: Keyloggers record keystrokes on a computer, capturing passwords and sensitive data without the user’s knowledge or consent.

4. Password spraying: Attackers use a limited set of common passwords to target multiple accounts, hoping that at least one of the passwords will work.

5. Social media and publicly shared personal info: Hackers exploit information publicly available on social media to guess or reset passwords, leveraging personal details to breach accounts and systems.

Methods of Creating Strong Passwords

Creating strong passwords involves two main strategies;

1. Passphrases

It was once effective but now requires careful construction. Instead of character-swapping or random additions, modern passphrases involve unrelated words arranged nonsensically or a chopped and swapped sentence known only to the user. 

For instance, “Sunshine@Mango$Jumping^River” combines unrelated words for enhanced security. 

2. Random Character Strings

It features a jumble of uppercase and lowercase symbols and numbers with no discernible pattern. 

For instance, “K#7p@dZ*q2L$f!9” showcases this complexity. Unlike passphrases, these strings, often mnemonic, make it exceedingly challenging for hackers, taking unimaginable timeframes for even advanced software to crack them.

Tips and Tricks to Create Strong Passwords 

These 10 tips empower strong password generation, ensuring safer online experiences.

1. Opt for lengthy passwords: Lengthening passwords enhances security by increasing combinations of thwarting guesses. Going from 8 to 12 characters makes passwords nearly unguessable.

2. Steer clear of common phrases: Avoid overused words like ‘password,’ ‘monkey,’ or predictable patterns like ‘abcd1234.’ Given the limited character pool, numerical passwords like ‘123456789’ are equally vulnerable.

3. Avoid personal details: Refrain from using easily accessible personal information like birthdays or addresses. These data points can be exploited and compromise your online security.

4. Diversify characters: Mix uppercase, lowercase, numbers, and symbols in passwords. Spread symbols evenly for better security.

5. Never reuse passwords: Using the same password across multiple accounts increases vulnerability. Unique passwords for each account prevent widespread exposure if one is compromised.

6. Secure password storage: Use trustworthy password managers for secure, encrypted password generation and storage. Avoid unsafe physical or digital locations like spreadsheets and browsers lacking encryption.

7. Limit unnecessary password changes: Frequent password changes, if not necessary, can weaken security. Instead, focus on strong initial passwords and employ controls to identify compromised ones.

8. Embrace 2-factor authentication:  Use 2-factor authentication for extra security, requiring a second verification step like a code or biometric data, making unauthorized access challenging.

9. Use VPNs on public WiFi: Protect sensitive data on public WiFi networks with a Virtual Private Network (VPN). VPNs encrypt information, safeguarding passwords and personal details from potential interception.

10. Share passwords securely: Use encrypted password managers for secure sharing, avoiding information compromise via dedicated secure portals.

Examples of Typical Errors When Creating Passwords 

Here are a few common password errors and their solutions to remember;

1. Example 01: Daniel08abby05

Fault: This password relies heavily on personal details and common dictionary words.

Resolution: A better alternative incorporates symbols, uppercase letters, and a random arrangement. Avoiding family names, opt for a combination like a movie character and a food type. Combine “Dumbledore” with “spaghetti” to create a strong password: duMbLedor3sp@gh3tt!

2. Example 02: T3ST!

Fault: This password is too short, just five characters, and includes part of a publicly available address.

Resolution: Opt for a longer password, preferably exceeding 10 characters. Replace the address component with a nearby street name, like transforming Maple Street to m@pl3Str33t#.

For more valuable information on password security threats, visit our website, Daily Digital Grind


How often should I change my password?

Experts advise changing passwords every three months or immediately after a cyber attack to limit hackers’ access. This practice ensures compromised passwords offer minimal access, enhancing account security.

What are good, strong passwords?

Strong passwords are long and use a mix of letters (both upper and lower case), numbers, and symbols. Avoid common words or personal information. Create a unique password for every account to enhance security.

What are the uses of passwords?

Passwords serve various purposes for computer users, allowing access to accounts, emails, applications, databases, networks, websites, and online content like news.

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