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Why it’s time to move on from passwords

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  • October 28, 2022
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Is it time to move on from passwords?

Over half of passwords used on the Internet or a computing device are reused. Think about it. If you’re anything like the average person you probably have accounts that require a password running into the hundreds. Even if you use a password manager, it’s unlikely that you have hundreds of passwords.

What is more likely is that you have a handful of passwords that you reuse time and time again.
In today’s blog, we explain the problems that this can cause and why it’s time to start thinking beyond passwords to keep you and your business secure.

What harm does it cause?

So you will probably be thinking initially what is the problem with reusing passwords? The ones that use might even be super strong with multiple capital letters, numbers and special characters. However, even the strongest password if used repeatedly can make you vulnerable.
If you use the same password repeatedly, it means that those who would seek to use it for nefarious purposes only need to find out one password (how this can be done is a topic for another day) to access multiple accounts linked to you.
It goes without saying that these could include vital accounts like your email or bank accounts.

Can’t I just use a password manager?

If there are problems that come with repeating use of the same password, could this be solved by using a password manager?
The answer is yes and no.
Obviously, using a password manager, a digital application which stores all of your passwords for you and can even automatically set different super strong passwords for each account, is without doubt an improvement on one password used multiple times.
The problem comes with human error. You are putting all of your eggs in one basket, and you are the one person who has the password to access them.
What if the account gets hacked? Given the amount of data within it would be an attractive target. What if you used a repeated password to secure that data?
There is of course, another way.

So what’s the solution?

With the popularity of smartphones, it is now very affordable for most of us to set up two-factor authentication when logging onto devices or accounts.
Two-factor authentication is when you link an account with a password to either a mobile phone number or a secure app. Then when you enter your password you are sent a unique, time-limited code, to the device of your choice. Once you enter the correct code you access the account as normal.
Increasingly this is being offered as an option when setting up digital accounts, and for logging into bank accounts (for example) it has been standard practice for many years.

Maybe now really is the time to move away from passwords.

As with many things related to keeping UK businesses and individuals safe online, there is some really helpful guidance on all manner of cyber security on the NCSC (National Cyber Security Centre) website.
If you would like to know more about how Webby Tech can help you to secure your IT, learn about our services here or contact us directly.