Cloud password best practices for data security

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You know you shouldn’t do it, but I bet you have a password or two that comes from the forbidden list of dog’s names, ‘password123’ and the super tricky ‘43210’. And it’s not surprising either, with the wealth of logins you have to remember. It’s no wonder you pick things you are unlikely to forget. While it’s okay for you to use your mother’s maiden name when accessing Aunty Mabel’s catalog of heirloom seeds, it’s not okay for your sensitive data, especially when that data is on the cloud. When your cloud applications are vulnerable to hacking, your business is at risk too.

Are your cloud applications at risk?

The cloud does provide a great deal of security, but there have been some pretty high profile cases of hacking databases that were stored on the cloud. Not only do you have to have uncrackable passwords that you can remember, you also have to ensure that all your employees access the cloud with secure, strong passwords and that they remember them and keep them safe. Your online applications are only as safe as the weakest link, so takes steps today to ensure the efficacy of your cloud security protocol.

Avoid common cloud password mistakes

You know that you shouldn’t use obvious passwords to access the cloud, but you should also avoid using the same ones for every site. People tend to create a secure password and then blanket it across their applications and devices because then they only have to remember one. This is a really bad idea because hackers can use your personal information to reset your password through customer care lines. Once they have access to one account, they can access all the linked accounts too.

Creating an uncrackable cloud password

Don’t use anything associated with you personally, no dictionary words, dates, or names. Passwords are personal; change them often and never ever share them with anyone else. You can start by using words, but substituting symbols for some of the letters. For example, if you want to use Brad Pitt as your cloud password, then type Br@dP!tt instead. Better still, mix up the capital letters to make your cloud password even more cryptic like bR@Dp!tT (every second letter is capitalized). And then, just for a final fancy flare, spell that sucker backwards so that your cloud password reads Tt!pD@Rb.

You can even use the same cloud password for other applications so that you only have to remember one at a time. This means you can start off with an abbreviation of the program or cloud database you are trying to access. This means that your Facebook password becomes FBTt!pD@Rb and your Twitter will be TTt!pD@Rb.

If this is too much for you, you can try mnemonics; here ‘This is my uncrackable cloud computing’ password! becomes TiMuCcp!

Another option is to design a single, uncrackable password which you commit to memory. You can then create the most complex passwords you like for each of your sites and then record them and save them on a password-protected document using the password you have memorized.

Use technology

Still, even if you use mnemonics or your excellent wit to create a fantastic password, how are you going to remember the tens of passwords you need to navigate your way around the Internet and the cloud? Well, luckily there is an app for that! You don’t have to remember all your passwords, or write them down, you can simply download a simple cloud-based app or software program that will take the burden of passwords on its broad cyber shoulders in your stead. These apps and programs are able to generate and store secure passwords for each of your sites so you don’t have to!

Test your cloud password

If you are concerned about the safety of your data in the cloud, or the efficacy of the passwords generated by your fancy new password app, then visit ‘How secure is my password’ or Password Meter and put it to the test.

No matter what method you use to protect your cloud passwords, ensure that you change them often, keep them safe and never share them with anyone. Outline these cloud password policies clearly to employees and ensure that they follow protocol to keep you safe on the cloud.