You probably know by now that you don’t have to be a genius to use a computer. They aren’t as complicated as we once fear. That being said there is one thing that still remains true about computer use. It is easy for a hacker to get inside our files and steal or corrupt our systems. Yet, you don’t have to be fearful. You just need to take some simple steps to make sure your computer is safe from corruption.
First, think about the passwords you use. You use passwords all over the internet from opening your email to opening different web pages. Most of us always use the same password for everything. But is your password unique? Here is a sampling of the most popular passwords according to a British website called Modern Life is Rubbish: News & Views of the Modern Interweb. What should you do if your password is on the list? Change is immediately.
2. PASSWORD. No, it isn’t clever. The survey said about 1 in 250 people uses the word password as their password.
3. Liverpool. Remember this was a British survey. So if you live in Columbus, don’t use Columbus as your password. On the same line, do not use the name of your local or state sports teams. It is just too obvious.
4. Letmein. Say it out loud. Let me in. Funny? Maybe. But not original.
5. 123456. It’s too obvious. If you want to do numbers, don’t do them in order.
6. qwerty. Look down at your keyboard. Its the six letters on the top row, below your numbers. Everyone has the same looking keyboard.
7. Charlie. Never choose a name of a close love one, your husband, wife, child, mother or anyone really close. If someone who knows you tries to hack into your computer, or someone who all ready has a short profile on you, it would be easy to guess.
8. Monkey. Why is this popular? It just seems to pop into everyone’s head.
9. Arsenal. Again, this is a popular British password. It stands for a popular soccer team. In the US, this would go for Giants, Cowboys, any popular sports team, especially the popular ones in the area where you live.
10. Thomas. This is another popular name that keeps being used. Again, don’t use names of close love ones (this means your pets, too) or even their birth dates or your anniversary. This would be too obvious to people who know you.
So what should you choose as your password? Something you can remember. Something that is unique. A password with numbers and letters is a good way to go, especially a combination of 6 to 8 characters. You may even want to change your passwords every few months, just to make sure your security is even stronger.
You should also always have a built in security system installed and turned on each time you go online (Norton Anti-virus is a good one), especially if you allow windows to remember your passwords.