By Elijah Boyd
My topic is the importance of strong passwords and 2-Factor Authentication. These are both standard ways to protect an account, but often get overlooked.
I am personally invested in this topic because only a few months ago, someone got into one of my accounts and from there attempted it get into many others of mine.
2-Factor Authentication consists of granting access to an account via two or three things:
•Something you know, IE a password or PIN number.
•Something you have, such as your phone or email.
•Something you are, usually a fingerprint or voice recognition.
Using a combination of these things make it nigh impossible for third parties to access your account.
It’s very common for websites to have password requirements when making a new account in order to keep that account secure. However, not all websites have password requirements forcing you to create a strong password, so its still important to do it when not required
“While important, usernames and passwords on their own are vulnerable to attack by third parties that use programs to randomly generate usernames and passwords to hack a user’s devices. 2FA gives your accounts an extra layer of security by keeping cybercriminals out—and your personal information in behind closed doors.” -Binghamton University
List of the most common passwords
(Seriously, never use one like this)
All the passwords on the list above can be brute-forced using hacking software almost instantly. The longer the password and the more types of characters is uses,(Numbers, upper and lowercase letters, special characters like # and $) the longer it will take to brute force. A 10-character long password using all the different types of characters will take 10 YEARS to brute force, making it extremely secure.
A lot of what I researched for this I already knew through my own experiences with the subject, but it was nice to see hard facts and numbers.
The importance of strong passwords and 2-Factor Authentication cannot be understated. Thousands of people each year lose access to their accounts and information by overlooking these basic and easy steps to secure your accounts. Once someone has cracked your password, its easy for them to try and access your other accounts as well, even more so if they share passwords.