In honor of Valentine’s Day, we’re diving into the importance of selecting a password that protects your privacy—and your heart.

Here are our tips for creating a strong password:

Rule #1: Make an effort to keep things exciting

A common mistake people make when it comes to password security is failing to change the default hard-coded password. Particularly when it comes to industrial control systems, this can prove detrimental.

Most routers and devices are deployed with hard-coded passwords, especially in the realm of ICS security. These default passwords are widely available online in manuals, or are frankly guessable. It doesn’t take much effort for a hacker to compromise your ICS systems if you don’t bother to change it.

Ideally, when changing your password, avoid using something personal or overtly easy to guess. That means you want something more complicated than “iloveyou.”

Rule #2: Profess your love loud and proud

As mentioned, “iloveyou” is a weak password, and that's because it is a weak profession of love. No upper case? No emphasis? No wonder it’s been leaked 1,608,627 times.

But let’s see what adding a capital letter can do: “Iloveyou” has only been leaked 11,755 times. Proper capitalization can make you over ten times safer!

To up your game even more, add spaces for proper word-separation: “I love you” has been leaked only 671 times.

And what if you’re really passionate about the message? “I love you!” has been leaked only 8 times, and the very emphatic “I love you!!” only 2 times.

If you really up your game, “I love you!!!” has NEVER been leaked, and neither has “I really love you” or a simple “Happy Valentine’s Day.” Now that’s secure.

Moral of the story: stronger professions of love provide significantly greater security. Or as our wonderful engineering team says:

References:

https://haveibeenpwned.com/