Secure passwords and where to turn for advice are the hot topics for this Safer Internet Day.
There are two steps that you can take to make your email account as secure as possible, and they really don’t take long.
Your email password should be strong and completely different from all your other passwords
A great way of making a strong password is to combine 3 random words that each mean something to you. This password will be easy for you to remember but hard to crack.
Look around you right now, and suitable words will jump out at you. “I’m in the kitchen, drinking coffee and eating porridge”. So, “KitchenCoffeePorridge” would be a great password!
If you went to the safari park at the weekend, and saw an elephant, how about “SaturdayElephantSafari” as a password? That will certainly stick in your memory!
Essentially, the strength of a password purely comes down to how long it is.
Don’t use your email password for any of your other accounts. Password re-use is one of the major factors in people getting hacked. Also, don’t use things that can be guessed, like children’s or pet’s names, significant dates or favourite sports teams.
Turn on 2-step verification for your email The second thing you can do to really protect your email account is to switch on two-step verification (2SV).
2SV gives you twice the protection so even if cyber criminals have your password, they still can't access your email.
2SV works by asking for more information to prove your identity. For example, getting a code sent to your phone by SMS when you sign in using a new device or change settings such as your password.
More information on “three random words”, two-step verification and other useful cybersecurity tips can be found on the National Cyber Security Centre “CyberAware” website which can be accessed by clicking here.
How can I talk to my children about staying safe online?
Many parents and carers may find starting difficult conversations with their children hard, and they are.