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Guide: Create a secure password


  • To provide guidelines on creating a secure password


  • Miami University community


  • myMiami
  • One Stop
  • Miami Gmail
  • BannerWeb
  • NetDisk (MyFiles)
  • Internet at large


  • Poorly-chosen passwords are responsible for many compromised or damaged accounts


Create a secure password

  • Your password should be:
    • at least eight characters in length—in general, longer is better
    • composed of a mix of letters (abc...), capitalization (aAbBcC...), numbers (1234...), and special characters (*&^%$@)
    • memorable—if your password is so complex that you cannot remember it without writing it down, choose another password
    • private—passwords should not be shared with anyone, even support staff


Choose your technique wisely

  • Avoid poor passwords by being choosing a creative technique
    • Pick a phrase that you can remember and compact it into a password
      • example: Bob is too witty becomes bobis2witty (don't use the word Bob if that is your own name)
    • Pick a phrase that you can remember and use the first letter of each word to create a password
      • example: All of my 3 children are wonderful kids becomes aom3cawk
    • Combine parts of several words to create a password
      • example: If my mother's maiden name is Burger and all of her 12 family members are crazy for pie, I might construct a password like burg12allnuts4pie
    • Many web sites provide tips on selecting good passwords: Conduct an Internet search on password security for more ideas


Avoid commonalities

  • Do not use:
    • a word that can be found in any dictionary—English, Chinese, French, German, Farsi, etc.
    • a value that is the same as your UniqueID
    • your name or birthdate, your significant other's name or birthdate, your child's name or birthdate, your dog's name, your mother or father's name, favorite band, etc.
    • your computer system's name
    • your favorite movie title or band or book
    • your street name or city
    • any of the passwords that are listed as examples on this page


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Article ID: 6604
Fri 6/5/15 11:14 AM
Fri 5/26/17 12:06 AM