Think about your computer usage and consider these 4 questions:
1) How many times each day do you use a log in name and password?
My guess it that it is more than 5, right?
2) How often each week do you have to click “forgotten password”?
Like any other busy mum with all kinds of dates, times and other information bouncing around your brain it is probably pretty often, isn’t it?
3) Do you risk it and use the same password for EVERYTHING?
4) Have you ever wished there was easy and secure way to file your passwords so you could remember them?
The Filing Fairies are Professional Organisers specialising in photo organisation, paper and computer filing. Recently during some of our Family Filing projects we have had clients ask us how they should file their passwords. I wanted to share the answer we give our clients with you all to save you some time and headaches.
There is a TONNE of password apps out there that can be synced and encrypted and so on and so forth but The Filing Fairies practise K.I.S.S (keep it simple stupid) so the method I want to share with you is old school mathematics. No not post it notes, grid paper or diaries – the secret to remembering your passwords is to use a FORMULA!
Hands up who knows E = Mc2?
What about π r²?
I have not had to calculate the circumference of a circle since I left primary school nearly 30 years ago, but it is entrenched in my memory never to be forgotten. Well the same goes for my password…I have ONE, yes just ONE formula to remember (oops not technically correct, I actually have 2 because I use one for personal use and one for business) but that is a hell of a lot less than I used to remember.
How does it work?
Easy! Just come up with a combination of words, symbols and numbers that mean something to you. Here it is written like a formula:
meaningful number + meaningful word + meaningful number 2 = your password
Don’t forget password 101 rule of not using easy things like pets or kids names still applies.
So now I bet you are asking; “how do I come up with words and numbers to use in my password formula”?
Here are a few ideas for combinations:
- The numbers in your car rego plates + your first teachers name + the street name and number of your childhood home
- The street number of your childhood home + your childhood imaginary friends name + your favourite ice cream flavour
- The age you were when you met your partner + your favourite cocktail + the last 3 digits of your mums phone number
Getting the idea?
Did you notice in my formula I always had numbers first? That is because more frequently now days you also need to include a symbol so I interchange the first digit of the number with the symbol corresponding to that number e.g. so if my password was 159huttonida8 it would now translate to !59huttonida8 in which case the formula should read:
meaningful number (first digit as symbol) + meaningful word + meaningful number 2 = your password
Need capital? – no drama there, just add it to the beginning of the meaningful word
Now that all might seem confusing or complex right now – I sure can remember being befuddled by that circumference formula back at school! But believe me, once you have used your personalised forumla a few times you will have no trouble remembering your password.
Of course I’m not saying that you should use these actual patterns, you need to come up with a formula for yourself that is easy for YOU to remember so that you can reach password nirvana and produce a password that is not only memorable but also secure.
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