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Passwords - Best practise
Keep your passwords strong
- Use a minimum of 10 symbols, including numbers, both uppercase and lowercase letters, and special symbols.
- Even better, use passphrases consisting of a minimum of 15 symbols using letters and numbers.
Avoid common password weaknesses
- Easy-to-guess passwords, especially "password"
- Your name, the name of your spouse or partner name, or other names
- A string of numbers or letters like “1234” or “abcd”, or simple patterns of letters on the keyboard, like “asdfg”
- Your phone number or your license plate number, anybody’s birth date, or other information easily obtained about you (e.g., your address, town or alma mater)
- Passwords of all the same letter
- Words that can be found in the dictionary
- Default passwords, even if they seem strong
- Any of the above followed or preceded by a single digit
Protect your password
- It is vital to remember your password without writing it down somewhere, so choose a strong password or passphrase that you will easily remember. If you have a lot of passwords, you can use password management tools, but you must choose a strong master key and remember it.
- Be aware of how passwords are sent securely across the Internet. URLs (web addresses) that begin with “https://” rather than “http://” are more likely to be secure for use of your password.
- If you suspect that someone else may know your current password, change it immediately.
- Change your password periodically (every 90 days for a strong password, every 180 days for a passphrase), even if it hasn't been compromised.
- Don't type your password while anyone is watching.
- Avoid using the same password for multiple websites containing sensitive information.
Follow password policy best practices for system administrators
- Configure a minimum password length of at least 10 characters for passwords or 15 for passphrases.
- Enforce password history, with at least 10 previous passwords remembered.
- Set a minimum password age of 3 days.
- Set a maximum password age of 90 days for passwords and 180 days for passphrases.
- Enable the setting that requires passwords to meet complexity requirements. This setting can be disabled for passphrases but it is not recommended.
- Reset local admin passwords every 180 days. This can be done with the free Netwrix Bulk Password Reset tool.
- Reset service accounts passwords once a year during maintenance.
- For domain admin accounts, use strong passphrases with a minimum of 15 characters.
- Track all password changes by enabling password audit policies. This can be done with Netwrix Auditor for Active Directory.
- Create email notifications for password expiration. This can be done with the free Netwrix Password Expiration Notifier tool.