The average person has around 118 online accounts, according to a study in the UK, and every single one has personal, if not financial, information tied to them. (File photo)

Security tips for National Password Day

Study found average person has 118 accounts, 73 per cent repeat same password

Many Canadians use the same password for multiple accounts, and with the average person holding around 118 accounts, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) is reminding people of good security practices in the lead up to National Password Day on March 15.

The fourth annual National Password Day is an initiative – run in conjunction with National Fraud Prevention Month and BBB’s Top 10 Scams campaign – to encourage businesses and consumers to practice proactive cybersecurity.

During this national day of awareness around fraud protection, BBB calls on Canadians to change the passwords of their top three accounts in terms of confidential information.

RELATED: West Shore RCMP investigating cyber fraud

“Passwords are such an integral part of our digital lives, as we use them to help secure important personal and financial information,” says Karla Davis, manager of Community and Public Relations for BBB serving Mainland B.C. “However, with 73 per cent of users repeating the same password for multiple online accounts and the majority not creating strong passwords at all, there are millions of people whose confidential information is one hacker away from being compromised, placing them at risk of falling victim to identity theft.”

The average person has around 118 online accounts, according to a study in the UK, and every single one has personal, if not financial, information tied to them.

RELATED: Thieves steal thousands from 140 Coast Capital Savings members

To help protect from hackers and fraud, BBB recommends changing passwords to include eight to 13 characters, with a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers and symbols.

Song lyrics, words in another language or unusual movie titles can be good, but avoid words found in the dictionary.

A common favourite for passwords is using family and pet names, but BBB highly discourages it, along with using birth dates, as these are easy to crack.

Also avoid just adding a number or letter to the last password. It is important to create something new.

Passwords should be changed at least two or three times per year, according to BBB, and should vary across accounts.

Closing inactive or seldom-used accounts is another way to minimize exposure.

To learn more, including additional password security best practices, visit bit.ly/password-day.

For information on BBB’s National Top 10 Scams, go to bit.ly/top10scams.

If you are a victim of a scam, report it to BBB by visiting bbb.org and using Scam Tracker.


 

keri.coles@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Abbotsford parents upset as district gets cohort exemption to maximize class sizes at elementary school

Classes and cohorts shuffled after division eliminated at King Traditional elementary school

Young Abbotsford cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

B.C. families financially affected by pandemic eligible for grocery gift cards

Program open to struggling families in Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley communities

‘Each step is a prayer’: Ojibwe man will walk from Hope to Vancouver Island for Indigenous healing, reconciliation

James Taylor departs Sept. 20, returns to Saanich in five days for sacred fire

COLUMN: We don’t need an election. But it’s 2020, so we’ll probably get one anyways.

There are only selfish reasons for the NDP to trigger an election this fall

B.C. or Ontario? Residential school survivors fight move of court battle

It’s now up to Ontario’s Court of Appeal to sort out the venue question

B.C. transportation minister will not seek re-election

Claire Trevena has held the position since 2017

VIDEO: Shots fired outside Langley gas station that was scene of 2018 homicide

No reports of injuries in Saturday evening incident

B.C. migrant, undocumented workers rally for permanent residency program

Rally is part of the Amnesty for Undocumented Workers Campaign led by the Migrant Workers Centre

Preparations underway for pandemic election in Saskatchewan and maybe B.C.

Administrators in B.C. and around the country are also looking to expand voting by mail during the pandemic

Nearly 20 per cent of COVID-19 infections among health-care workers by late July

WHO acknowledged the possibility that COVID-19 might be spread in the air under certain conditions

Ferry riders say lower fares are what’s most needed to improve service

Provincial government announces findings of public engagement process

Air quality advisory ends for the Lower Mainland

It had been in effect since Sept. 8

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Most Read