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Forgot Another Password? You're Not Alone

The biggest problem in online security just might be remembering how you secured your accounts. A new study has found that the average internet user has been locked out of 10 online accounts in the past month alone.  The survey of over 2,000 people found that a password reset isn’t likely to be a permanent fix, either, because 57% admit they forget their new password immediately upon resetting it.

Memorizing passwords is so difficult that two-thirds of us say they will forget it unless they write it down. As a result, 58% say they struggle to feel productive while working remotely. Two-thirds also admit they actually avoid visiting certain websites or accounts where they’ve forgotten the password. Accounts with lost passwords we most often avoid include personal email, bank accounts, and utility bill accounts.

How to make a foolproof password

1. Start with a sentence

Despite the “word” in “password,” it’s better to think of starting with multiple words. Some websites require only six or eight characters for passwords, but that doesn’t mean it’s a recommended length. Pick a sentence that’s memorable but doesn’t have details that relate too closely to you. Avoid using birthdays or the names of pets or family members, and feel free to be creative. Here’s an example: "cats do not like cucumbers." Then, take out the spaces, "catsdonotlikecucumbers.

2. Avoid using real words

Change how your sentence looks by removing all the vowels, or only use the first one or two letters of each word. Don’t use dictionary words, which makes your password easier to guess.

The previous example becomes “cadonolicu” if you’re using the first two letters of every word in that sentence.

3. Mix in numbers, symbols and uppercase letters

Bring in a variety of characters to your password. Some websites have minimum requirements so you need to use at least one capital letter, one lowercase letter and a number. You might have to add a symbol like a period or exclamation point, too. As you mix it up, don't repeat letters, numbers or symbols right next to each other.

By capitalizing some letters, replacing the “l” with an exclamation point and turning an “o” into a zero, the sample password becomes “CaD0No!icU.”