Beating the post-holiday depression: Cybersecurity tips for a happy New Year

Blue Monday is considered the saddest day of the year. It falls on the third Monday of January and is the result of a combination of several factors, including the weather, debt and low motivation at work.

Some people may feel down when the long-awaited New Year does not really bring anything new and keeping their resolutions after the holiday is no easier than before it. When it is not yet possible to dramatically change a lifestyle, it can be better to focus on something simple and realistic like picking up a useful habit such as keeping passwords safe. This small positive change will ensure the New Year will not bring reasons for sadness like losing money, or personal data.

Kaspersky experts have collected several simple tips on how to manage and embrace users’ relations with passwords.

  1. Eliminate combinations like “1234” and “admin” in the password

Such passwords are convenient and simple for users, but unfortunately, for attackers as well. Passwords such as this are easily guessed by algorithms that sort through possible combinations of characters. To protect personal information, it’s safer to use more complex and unique passwords, consisting of various symbols, numbers and letters – both in upper and lower case.

  1. It’s better to exclude personal information from passwords

The use of a date of birth or wedding anniversary, the name of home street or city of residence makes a password more obvious to an attacker. The password should not contain personal information about an account owner, especially the one that is publicly available. Instead, it is better to use random combinations of words and letters that do not add up to meaningful words and phrases. There are several methods on how to create strong passwords. For instance, users can choose an associative method, or emoji approach etc.

  1. Safe practice is to use unique passwords for each account

Even if following the previous tips did not protect an account from hacking, then this rule will at least not make the scale of the misfortune even bigger. The sequence of letters, numbers and symbols must be unique for each account, then even with the worst outcome, not all of the user`s information will end up in the hands of hackers.

  1. The association method for passwords could be a useful and safe practice

This method involves choosing a few words or phrases that are associated with events, places, or people that are personally important. Then, by combining these words or phrases, a unique password that is easy to remember but difficult to pick is created. It is important that the phrase should only make sense to the user and not include common «Iloveyou» type expressions.

  1. Don’t hesitate to install a password manager

Using only “password123” for all accounts and not changing it for years can be a very tempting solution. Indeed, coming up with a unique and complex password for dozens of accounts can be a daunting task, which can be delegated to reliable password managers. Such apps can not only create strong passwords, but also store them – and sensitive data such as medical information, financial data – securely on each of your devices.


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