Stop Facebook from Spying on You...: And Other Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy (2015)
The Safest Password Today
Every day, you hear of another security breach from a major retailer or other business. It’s clear that hackers are all around us. What is one to do? Fight back with a secure password.
The challenge is that just about any password you can think up, the bad guys can guess with the help of password-hacking software. One common strategy—turning a memorable phrase into an obscure password by combining the first letter of each word in the phrase—has become so popular that the hacking software now can guess some of these seemingly secure passwords as well. Trouble is, people tend to gravitate to the same phrases. Star Wars fans use MTFBWY (May The Force Be With You)…Shakespeare fans, TBONTBTITQ (To Be Or Not To Be That Is The Question).
If you want a truly strong password for your most important accounts, use one created by the free “Password Generator” on Random.org or a similar site. But the challenge with truly random passwords is remembering them.
The secret is to mentally convert these random passwords into phrases. The random password RPM8T4KA might be remembered as Revolutions Per Minute Eight-Track for KAthy, for example. The human mind is very good at remembering phrases, even odd ones that include a lowercase letter, a number or a symbol. Keep trying the random password generator until you get a password that you can convert into a phrase that you can remember.
Expert Source: William Poundstone, author of Rock Breaks Scissors: A Practical Guide to Outwitting Almost Everybody (Little, Brown).