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 As part of the Internet community, we use passwords every day. Just think about it, how many times a day do you login to a website? 5? 10? 30? There are varying degrees of personal information behind those passwords, and that information is a treasure trove to identity thieves. Safeguarding your personal information with good password habits is a must. Here are a few simple tips to help keep your personal information safe:

DON’T choose a DUMB Password

You know who you are. “password123’, ‘qwerty’, ‘mypassword’. These are all examples of passwords identity thieves LOVE to find. Don’t let them find yours! Check out this list by a password management company, SplashData, and if you are using any of these passwords, change them immediately!  Worst Passwords of 2013

DO choose a unique password

It is best not to use any word found in the dictionary. I know.. you’re thinking “WHAT? REALLY?!” but it’s true. At least throw in some random characters if you are going to use a real word. So instead of ‘blueberry’, make it ‘blu3berry4!me’. Variety is key.

DO make passwords as long as is allowed

If the site you are creating a password allows long passwords, take advantage of that. Longer passwords (12-20 in length) are MUCH HARDER for a thief to crack. Just think: “blueberry” vs “blu3berry4!me786”. See the difference?

DO change passwords frequently

Every 6 months. Yes. EVERY 6 MONTHS.  And no, you can’t reuse passwords more than once.

Now that you are a Password-Expert, try going to this website and type in some passwords to see the difference in how difficult they are to crack. It’s fascinating!
Hopefully this will add a stronger layer of protection for your online life!  If you are interested in password management, LastPass is a good place to start.