The Advantage of Powerful Passwords
Online Privacy and Security For You and Your Child
I plan to introduce this topic to the students by using the comparison that online passwords are similar to the combinations for a lock. They are secret combinations of letters and numbers that only you know. And when they are older, they will use passwords to do many things, such as save points on their favorite online games and even keep track of their money or shop online.
Below are a few helpful tips to review with your child on making secure passwords, and even a fun little quiz so you can see how powerful your current passwords truly are.
THE DON'TS OF MAKING A PASSWORD
1. Don’t use dictionary words as your password.
2. Don’t use private identity information in your password.
3. Don’t use your phone number as your password.
4. Don’t use your nickname as your password. (It could be easy for others to guess.)
5. Don’t share your password with your friends. (Even if you trust them, they might unintentionally do something that puts you or your information at risk.)
THE DO'S OF MAKING PASSWORDS
1. Do include letters, numbers, and symbols in your password. (It can be harder to guess passwords with this combination.)
2. Do make passwords eight or more characters long. (Longer passwords are harder to crack than shorter ones.)
3. Do change your password at least every six months. (This way, even if someone does guess your password, they won’t be able to get into your account for long.)
4. Do give your password to your parent or guardian. (They will help you remember it if you forget it.)
5. Do create a password that you can remember. (It’s okay to create a random password, but keep in mind that it should be one that you can remember, or else it won’t do you much good.)
Is Your Current Password POWERFUL Enough?!
Statement 1: If you change your password at least every six months, add 3 points.
Statement 2: If you use your nickname as your password, subtract 2 points.
Statement 3: If your password includes letters, numbers, and symbols, add 3 points.
Statement 4: If your password has less than eight characters, subtract 1.
Statement 5: If you haven’t changed your password in two years, subtract 4.
Statement 6: If your password has at least eight characters, add 2 points.
Statement 7: If you let your friends use your password, subtract 2.
Statement 8: If no one except you and your parent or guardian knows your password, add 2 points.
Statement 9: If your password has no private information, add 3 points.
Statement 10: If your password is a word in the dictionary, subtract 2.
Statement 11: If your password is hard for you to remember, subtract 2.
Statement 12: If your password is not your home phone number, add 2 points.
15 points - Perfect score! You know exactly what it takes to keep your information safe and secure.
10 to 14 points - Not too bad. You definitely know what takes to make a good password, now it's time to take your security up a notch and make that password POWERFUL.
9 points and below - Your information is probably not as secure as you thought it would be. Review the tips listed in the section above to make your passwords more POWERFUL.