June 16, 2022

Memory Lane

As 10-D is approaching our 18th year and it has fallen to me to write the WST this week, it got me wondering what some of our first weekly security tips were about. So, I dug around in the archives and found some classic topics from our first year of tips; Java, Vishing & Smishing, Remote Access & Multi-Factor Authentication, ATM skimming, and password management, just to name a few.

One in particular caught my eye regarding password length. Remember when the password length recommendation was 8 or more characters? That was the message of this early WST. It even included a chart noting it would take a hacker 115 days to crack an 8-character password. Today, the bad guys will crack your 8-character password in 8 hours. Yes, the bad guys are getting better, too.

Currently, 10-D recommends 10 or more characters using numbers, symbols, and upper- and lower-case letters. Make it a passphrase so it is easier to remember and save yourself some reset headaches. These changes will bump up hack time to about 5 years, so you should be well on to a new password by the time they crack this one!

Authored by: Brad Goetsch

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