Only one little password stands between your business and a secure network. That password is critically valuable, and therefore, you need to know how to create and protect it properly. Business passwords are especially important for the safety and well-being of employees and customers. If you are intent on creating a secure network and protecting your business passwords, then follow these simple guidelines.
Strength in Numbers (and upper and lower case letters)
One of the very first things you should know about a password is that using a combination of numbers, uppercase letters, and lower case letters increases the strength of your security. A secure password might contain any combination of numbers and letters, but at minimum, it should contain at least one number, as well as a combination of upper and lower case letters. Not only does this make it difficult for prospective deviants to guess business passwords, but it makes them hard to remember for anyone who is not close to the organization.
A Need to Know Basis
Business passwords should be distributed on a need to know basis. Employees who must access certain programs or files on a regular basis should be granted access to the applicable business passwords. On the other hand, if an employee requires only occasional access, then he or she should just as easily be able to gain access with assistance from a leader or manager in the business. The less people who know the password, the more secure the password is. A secure password is certainly no longer secure if every employee knows what it is. Determine who needs to know and who does not need to know, and stick to your decisions.
Change Will Do You Good
It’s always a good idea to change your business passwords on a regular basis. You can set up your computer systems to prompt required changes on a set interval. Changing passwords at minimum once every six months is an excellent measure toward creating a secure network and maintaining secure passwords. Creating a secure network is impossible if business passwords are not kept completely confidential.
While it may be tempting at first, business passwords should not be written down under any circumstances. A system administrator can reset passwords as necessary, which may occur frequently around a required password change. The inconvenience to the network administrator is far less detrimental than a breach of secure files. Another key to creating a secure network is avoiding patterns. Do not under any circumstances change business passwords by altering one character, say the last number, in a pattern form.
Out with the Old, In with the New
Finally, it is critical that you protect your business passwords by restricting employee access just as soon as an employee is terminated or voluntarily separates from the business. This is the responsibility of the network administrator and human resource department. Changes in staffing need to be recorded and reported efficiently. Creating a secure network mean nothing if that security is not maintained.