Online Account Security

To keep your online accounts secure, follow these guidelines:

  • Create a different password for each online account, especially the following:

Financial websites
Shopping websites
Facebook/Social Media websites
Any online account that includes your personal and/or financial information

Important: If you have an Apple ID, the Apple account password should be different from your email password. The only exception is if you use an Apple email address (@mac.com, @me.com or @icloud.com) as your primary email address.

  • Create passwords that include 8 characters or more
  • Change your password periodically (i.e. every 6 months or more frequently)
  • Keep a record of your passwords in a notebook or on a thumb drive and store in a safe place
  • Avoid storing your passwords on your computer, iPhone, iPad or any other device connected to the Internet
  • Avoid using personal information such as your name, address, birthday, anniversary, a family member’s name, a pet’s name, or any information that could be found in a directory
  • Avoid using common words as your password, even if spelled backwards or in a different language
  • Avoid using repetitive characters or characters in a sequence
  • Avoid sending your password in an email
  • Avoid entering personal information after clicking a link in an email
  • Avoid opening an email attachment when you’re not sure what it contains, even if the email is from someone you know

Step-by-Step Example of How to Create a Strong Password

Step 1: Create an acronym from a favorite phrase, song or book title

    • Phrase: my password is extremely secure
    • Acronym: mpies

Step 2: Use a combination of capital and lowercase letters

    • Password: MpiEs

Step 3: Use numbers in the middle of the password. Numbers at the beginning or end are easier to guess.

    • Password: Mp94iEs

Step 4: Include characters such as punctuation (? ! .) and symbols ($ & @ * %). Refer to the specific website to determine what type of characters are accepted when creating an online account.

    • Strong Password: M$p94iEs!