This whole TalkTalk issue got me thinking about passwords when a friend told me they still used something basic or they had to write it on a post-it note. After getting properly told off, I gave them a few tips to avoid using stupid easy passwords (like these).
Seriously, access to your online accounts can cause a WHOLE WORLD OF PAIN and unless you are happy to leave your wallet/purse with a list of your credit card PINs on the registration table at the National Association of Sticky Fingered Gits conference, then change them now!
I know it is difficult to remember them all, which is why I used a combination of Lastpass and 1Password to keep passwords under control, although Lastpass should do you. Choose a master password that is as long as possible and then use Lastpass to create and store specific passwords for each service you use. What this means is that if someone DOES get your details via a TalkTalk style hack, they won’t be able to use the same details to try and get into your PayPal, Facebook, eBay etc. accounts.
So how to come up with a long password that you can actually remember? Simple, think of a favourite song or phrase and use the first letters of each word. So using Twinkle Twinkle Little Star as an example would give us:
The song is easy to remember, but put those first letters together and you get ‘Ttls,hiwwya,uatwsh,ladits.’ Now add one a word or something that means something to you like your pets name and your birthday which could give you ‘Ttls,hiwwya,uatwsh,ladits.Tiddles01012015’
Chuck that in https://howsecureismypassword.net/ and it shows how secure this is, and after a few uses you will soon get used to typing it (with Lastpass, you only have to type it once per session).