If your password is only one word, the best option to make it more secure may be to increase it – it’s time to upgrade to a “multi-word password” or “passphrase”. With more words at stake, why not use the spacebar?
Why use the spacebar for passwords?
Kiersten Todt, director of the Cyber Readiness Institute and former Obama administration cyber security consultant, told Business Insider that “Password is a little misleading word. What you really should use is a passphrase.”
He is not wrong.
Still according to Todt, make your passphrase as long and difficult as possible. Using three to four words to be safe and five is already very safe.
Following the reasoning of using multiple words, it’s okay to use spaces to separate words in your “passphrase”. Not all platforms support using the spacebar, but many major sites, such as Google and Facebook, accept it as a valid password character. Google just asks the password not to start or end with a blank space. In between, it is accepted as every ASCII character is.
The space helps us remember the password as a common phrase you type every day and acts as one more random character in the middle of the full password.
A passphrase is stronger than a password because, being larger, it increases entropy or the amount of randomness, making guessing by bots more difficult.
Unlike complex one-word passwords, but with many special characters, phrasal passwords are easy to remember. The creators of ProtonMail, a “secure email” service, say multi-word passwords are a solution to the problem that we humans are bad at creating good passwords and then remembering.
What is a passphrase?
To recap, a passprhase is when a password that uses a series of words, separated by spaces or not. Although passwords usually contain more characters than passphrases, “passphrases: contain fewer” components “(four easy-to-remember words instead of, say, 12 random characters.) This makes it easier for humans to remember how “Blue Horse in HomeWho” or “tune and sing wrong with me”. Be creative.
Is Passprhase safer?
Passwords and passphrases (with or without space) can be safe if you are using a password manager. However, if you are creating a new password that should be kept in mind, it is best to use a “passphrase”.
How to create a good passphrase?
- Four words should be enough;
- Do not choose popular phrases or sayings;
- The words should be as random as possible;
- Use a unique password for each account you have.
Google gives more tips
“For you, a strong password can be easy to remember, but for someone else it needs to be almost impossible to guess.” Must be at least 8 characters.
In Gmail, don’t use a password that:
- be particularly weak, for example “password123”;
- has been used in your account before;
- start or end with a blank space;
How to create long passwords in Gmail
Long passwords are stronger. Try using a series of words that are meaningful to you or an abbreviation using the first letter of each word of the chosen sentence.
Do not use common words and patterns
Also try to avoid:
- obvious words and phrases like “password” or “let me in”;
- sequences such as “abcd” or “1234”;
- Keyboard patterns, such as “qwerty” or “qazwsx”.