Creating Strong Passwords for your Mobile Devices and Enforcing Them

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In a 7 November article in The New York Times, Nicole Perlroth, who writes about cyber security  interviewed Jeremiah Grossman, CTO at WhiteHat Security, an Internet and network security firm, and Paul Kocher, founder of Cryptography Research, a security firm that specializes in keeping systems hacker-resistant, to find out how to create passwords that keep your devices and your information safe from hacking.

One of the best ways to create a strong password is to create a passphrase. Perlroth suggests taking a film quote or song lyric and creating a phrase from the first or the first few letters of each word in the phrase, sentence or lyric. For example, using the first two letters of each word in the first line of The Beatles’ “Penny Lane,” “Penny Lane there is a barber showing photographs,” becomes an indecipherable passphrase: pelathisbashph (we omitted the “a” before “barber”).

Perlroth also advises keeping clear of the dictionary. While it might be tempting to find something clever deep in the pages of The Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary, like “flibbertigibbet” ormaunder,” Paul Kocher believes “the worst passwords are dictionary words or a small number of insertions or changes to words that are in the dictionary,” since hackers can test passwords from a dictionary or aggregated from breaches. It’s best to stick with something unique to you and your company.

Once you’ve created an invincible password for your company’s mobile devices, it’s crucial that you enforce that password. 2X MDM is an online service that allows you to monitor, track and secure all of your company’s mobile phones, tablets and notebooks. With 2X MDM, you can enforce a strong password on all of your devices, including Android Phones and iPhones – with iPhones, 2X MDM enables you to set the minimum password length, time lapse before the iPhone auto-locks and the maximum number of failed password attempts before the iPhone wipes its data.

Combining strong passwords with 2X MDM is the best way to protect your company’s mobile devices and all of the data they contain. Sign up for a free 2X MDM account today.

Sean Bianco is the marketing documentalist and technical writer at Parallels. With a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology and Networking and a three year background in software quality assurance testing and usability engineering, Sean is a subject matter expert in mobility and smartphone, app and device management. He is well-versed in developing technical articles and determining market trends. His excellent analytical and problem-solving skills, with emphasis on understanding relationships between technical problems, result in sound and effective business solutions.

  • David Porter

    Hi, and thanks very much for reading this blog post, and for your comment. Maybe the best thing to do, if you are using a number of password-protected websites, is to create a number of pass-phrases and use them for particular clusters of websites. For example, if you are banking online, create one pass-phrase for each account. You might want to use a single password for each ecommerce site you visit, such as amazon and ebay, since these sites also save account information. For other sites, like Facebook and Linkedin, which don’t store account information, you can use the same pass-phrase.

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