Could someone really hurt you if they had your password? Your password is like a key to a lock. With your password, threatening email could be sent from your account. Items could be purchased on web sites where you have enabled one-click shopping. Your bank and other sensitive account information could be accessed and used without your knowledge. Your credit rating could be affected. Your identity could be stolen. People could get access to University systems that contain sensitive employee, student, and financial information.
Security is your responsibility. Help keep your information and University of Wyoming data safe by using a secure password. Below are some tips on keeping crackers at bay.
It is important to use a long, strong password for your accounts, and the most important factor in creating a secure password is its length. The easiest way for someone to gain access to your accounts is to figure out your password. It is easier to crack a password than you might think! For example, if you only use 6 characters in your password, and they are all lowercase (abc), a password cracking program can crack your password in under 5 seconds! The chart below gives the approximate times to crack sample passwords of different lengths with different possible characters using 3 cracking scenarios: Online Attack, Offline Fast Attack, and Massive Cracking Array Scenario.
|Password||Online Attack (1,000 guesses/second)||Offline Fast Attack (100 billion guesses/second)||Massive Cracking Array (100 trillion guesses/second)|
|092743576||1.8 weeks||0.01 seconds||Instant|
|DOGPOUND||6.91 years||2.17 seconds||Instant|
|DOGPOUNDS||1.8 centuries||56.5 seconds||0.06 seconds|
|DoGPoUnds||900 centuries||7.87 hours||28.3 seconds|
|D0gP0unds||4,370 centuries||1.59 days||2.29 minutes|
|D0gP0und.s||19 million centuries||19.24 years||1.0 weeks|
|D.0.g.P.0.u.n.d.s||1.34 billion trillion centuries||1.34 billion trillion centuries||13.44 billion centuries|
As you can see, the longer a password can be made by padding its length, the longer it takes to crack.
UW helps protect against these types of password cracking tools by locking out accounts after three incorrect attempts.
Here are some tips for creating a secure password.
For more information on how to create a secure password and see how long it could take to crack, please visit How Big is Your Haystack ( http://www.grc.com/haystack.htm ).
Current updates, free software, and information on UW's Computer Security Initiative may be found on the CSI: UW computer security pages. You can also contact the IT Help Desk at (307) 766-4357, option 1; or send an email to email@example.com.