Nerd Talk: Users should pay close attention to passwords, security

Nerd TalkBy JUSTIN M. NGUYEN 

Web administrator 

With the University located in the center of a densely populated area, students are likely accustomed to paying close attention to their personal security.

But what about their online security?

With the recent revelationsregarding the spying activities of the National Security Agency, many individuals — both tech savvy and not — may wonder how to secure their online identity from both the government and individual hackers.

One of the easiest ways users can keep their online identities safe is by using secure and unique passwords.

Many hackers will access passwords from unsecure sites, such as online forums or blogs, and test those passwords with the emails associated with them.

In other words, if people’s password for their personal blogs and for their emails are the same, hackers could easily access their emails and other information, including bank accounts and credit cards.

An easy way to create secure passwords is to use a mnemonic sequence of words, instead of random characters and symbols — which most websites suggest.

For example, a password for a Facebook account could be a best friend’s name combined with a favorite color or animal.

After all, “SteveJohnsonRedDog” is easier to remember as a password than “fjy@81bevBl12/ Beea.”

In the end, the most important fact to remember when connected to the Internet is that everything online — every email, every image, every comment, and every password — will forever be stored on the Web; remember to use caution when putting anything on the Web.

Business & Science

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