Unit 4 – Question 2

My students play many online games and join various social network platform. Therefore, it is extremely important for them to secure their password. I will show them how easily a simple password can be cracked:

Picture 1 (Source: Csermoocs, Adelaide University)
* The next thing mentioned in my lesson would be CAPTCHA. My students need to know that CAPTCHA could be annoying sometimes but it protects your account and information. This is a computer program intended to distinguish humans from machines. They are used to protect websites, banking, social media against automated malicious software accessing the site from using many multiple random guesses at your password.
* Following activity is how to create a strong password, passcode or passphrase. Some tips could be applied to strengthen your password:
(Source: https://www.hostpapa.ca/blog/security/how-to-create-strong-passwords-to-secure-your-website/)
– Learn from gamers: Gamer often use random numbers, letters, and misspellings. This is done to get the name that people want when that identity has already been taken. You can apply this to your passwords as well. In the online world, an ‘E’ can become a ‘3’, an ‘A’ can become a ‘4’, an ‘O’ can become a ‘0’ and so on. Misspellings are also helpful when gamers want to create an identity for themselves. Change a ‘Z’ to an ‘X’, add an extra ‘R’ or ‘S’, or change an ‘S’ to a ‘Z’. For example, the name “The Agent Zero” can become something more crafty like “Th3 4g3nt X3r0”.
Use this premise when creating your passwords, think of a spelling that nobody else would ever consider. Many brute force attacks will go through the dictionary and try every single word until it finds one that works. Swap out certain letters for numbers and spell things wrong on purpose in a way that you can remember. This way, brute force attacks will have to use other means to try and decipher your password.

– Make a sentence:
A one-word password can be easy to crack, which is why it is smart to come up with a sentence that only you can remember. No need to use the whole sentence, just parts to make it even more confusing.
Take a simple statement like, “In the year 2000 I turned 9 years old”. It’s something simple, personal and easy to remember. Now change that sentence into a complex code only you can remember, “iTy#2tH0us4nd-It_nIn3Yo”. Now you have a complex password that’s pretty much impossible to crack.

– Multi-factor authentication:
Let’s say someone gets your information and breaks your password. A scary thought to be sure, but there are certain precautions you can take to further your security. Multi-factor authentication is one of those precautions. Multi-factor authentication is used to verify your identity when your account is accessed from an unrecognized device.
If any suspicious logins occur, a message is sent to your email or device to alert you. Many businesses already use multi-factor authentication to protect their clients’ information – you too should enable it wherever you can. This way, if anyone ever breaks through your password, you will be notified immediately so you can reset it and kick the hackers right out of your account.

– Secure your devices
The best passwords in the world are of no use if you don’t secure the devices they are used on. If you have a PC, make sure that you have good antivirus software installed to prevent malware from stealing information. Some pieces of malware, known as “keyboard loggers”, can record all of your keystrokes and enable hackers to crack your passwords. Keep your information safe and secure by keeping your antivirus up-to-date at all times.

* Last step, after creating a strong password, I would ask my students to test how secure their passwords are on this website: https://howsecureismypassword.net/



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