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Make your passwords long and complicated

Make life a little harder for hackers. Stop using easy passwords! Try a safe combination of characters.

india Updated: Jun 07, 2006 17:21 IST
DPA

Make life a little harder for hackers. Stop using easy passwords! Try a safe combination of characters when selecting a computer password. Names should be avoided in favour of random numbers and letter combinations like 1M@l&st_k8KuP, recommends PC Professionell magazine.

Lower case and capital letters should also be used alternately to make life harder for password crackers. Hackers use various methods to crack passwords, the magazine reports. If the password is entirely unknown, then the so-called brute force attack is often used.

This involves a tool to systematically test out all possible letter and number combinations. The longer the selected password, the longer the cracking process will last.

Security experts agree that the best practice theory requires that a password: is typed manually each and every time it is required; is random; is unique and used in only one place; is at the very least eight characters long, but 14 or more is better; and  contains a mix of upper and lower case letters.