Just a few words before you proceed. As long as your password looks like this, is is probably fine:


Actually, it is simply the word “password”, and replacing some letters with alphabets or numbers of your choice. No one will know how you “translate your letters, e.g. using @ for a, 1N for W, 5 for s and vice versa depends on which comes first, and 0(zero) for O. Make your own rules and remember that rule and apply to a phrase instead of dictionary word, e.g. the word “joinlast” can be “j01n1@57”.

The complete article from Debbie is attached below.


Article by Debbie Jacobsen

With so many online accounts to manage, most people tend to use the
same password for everything. Many also tend to use a very “easy to
guess” password. These are two common “password mistakes” that
cyber-thieves are looking for.

One of the most important things you can do to stay safe online is to ensure your passwords remain private.

Passwords are designed to offer protection, used as the “key” to
a door that provides access to some very sensitive personal
information. If this information got into the wrong hands, financial
loss or identity theft could easily occur.

Password theft and identity theft is more common today than ever – due
to spyware, Trojans and phishing scams. Once a password has been
compromised, an insurmountable amount of personal damage can occur in a
matter of minutes. The more accounts your password works with, the
greater the damage. For the best security, online account passwords
should be different as well as difficult.

Safe Password Tips

  • Use passwords that are at least eight characters long.
  • Use a combination of upper and lower case letters, and include at
    least one number or special character. A “special character” is
    something like *, &, or -.
  • Never use your email password for anything other than your email account.
    Make sure all bank and credit card account passwords are different from each other.
  • Never use your name, birth date or social security number in a password.
    Change your passwords from time to time, especially bank account passwords.
    Never store passwords in a common document file (Excel, Word, Notepad, etc…) that is not protected by encryption.

Password Management

Most people tend not to use difficult and/or varied passwords,
because password management can be a tedious and time consuming task.
When we’re paying bills or shopping online, we want easy and instant
access to our account so we can complete our tasks. It’s frustrating to
get “bad password” error messages, and it’s a hassle to answer
challenge questions in order to request a password reset.

Because it’s nearly impossible to follow safe password practices
without writing down all our passwords, the only way to securely manage
passwords is to use some type of password management software.

There are two good options here, and both are easy and inexpensive.

The easiest thing to do is to utilize file encryption software to
protect the document that has the passwords stored on it. For this, I
recommend something like Absolute Password Protector by Last Bit
Software. They have a
B&gt;free trial version

you can download to see how you like it. This software uses strong 128
bit encryption to securely encrypt any file you have stored on your
computer – making it easy for you to access but very difficult for a
thief to utilize. With this software, you can store all your passwords
in a Word, Excel or text file and then encrypt that file to keep it

Another good way to manage passwords is to use an encrypted database to store all of your password information. I use Passwords Plus
by DataViz. This is designed to be used on a PDA, but I use it on my
computer. Passwords Plus is easy and convenient, but the downside is
you have to set up the database by keying in all your accounts and

Both of these methods of password management cost around $29, and it is
well worth it. Unlike a lot of software that requires a subscription to
keep it functioning, password management software is a “one time”

Practicing Good Computer Security Habits Will Help Keep You Safe Online

Maintaining “difficult to guess” passwords is just one very important
thing you can do to keep yourself safe online. There are many more things
you can (and should) do to protect your computer and your data from
cyber-thieves and malicious software. A few things to keep in mind are to
use a good antivirus and anti-spyware software product, avoid downloading and
installing “free” software (it usually contains spyware and/or adware) and never
click links in emails that appear to come from a financial institution.
See this

Computer Security Checklist
for more safe computing tips.


Debbie is an informtion technology professional and author of