We’ve all heard about the major corporate data breaches that have become rampant over the last few years. Some of us have even experienced it firsthand. However, what you may not realize is that one data breach could lead to all of your online accounts being hacked, if you’re not careful.
A recent Google survey found that more than 65 percent of people reuse the same password across multiple sites, and some people even use the same password across all sites! Cyber criminals are banking on this, and once they gain access to your username and password for one account, they don’t stop there. Hackers use a technique called “credential stuffing,” which means that they reuse stolen credentials from one database across hundreds of other websites trying to gain access wherever they can.
To protect yourself against these kinds of cyberattacks, it is imperative that you avoid reusing credentials and, instead, use a unique and complex password for each one of your online accounts. Statistics show that most people rely on memory to store their passwords and therefore use common phrases or number sequences that they can easily remember. This is the biggest mistake people make. If you can easily remember it, chances are, cyber criminals can easily hack it!
Besides, these days, the average person has dozens of passwords. Trying to remember all of those is not only difficult, but totally unnecessary. There are plenty of password manager apps available, many of which are free. These apps are essentially encrypted digital vaults where you can safely store your usernames and passwords for each of your online accounts. Password managers can also help you generate strong, unique passwords in a flash, so there’s no need to reuse the same password over and over again.
During uncertain times, like these, when scams and fraud are on the rise, it’s critical that we are careful. Don’t let hackers take advantage of you. Practice good password hygiene and protect yourself against these types of attacks today!