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Are you and your business users creating passwords that can be easily guessed — leaving your healthcare computer security at risk? Creating a strong password is one of the best steps that you can take to help protect your organization from cybercriminals who are interested in the high-quality personal data that is stored within your systems. Computer security in healthcare is highly regulated, with many rules around compliance that were created to help protect your constituents. Here are a few ideas you can leverage to build a better password.

Create a Complex Password

There are several things you should never do when you are creating a password, such as picking the name of your spouse or child. Using any type of anniversary or birthday is also a big no-no, as these are pieces of information that can be found on social media or discovered through a simple Google search. Instead, create a password that includes a complex variety of upper and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.

Using Original Passwords

Resist the temptation to use everyday words or terms, including things such as public figures and other well-known words in your passwords. Come up with something unique and original to you, preferably that includes a variety of random terms that can’t be easily linked together. Some experts suggest creating a unique sentence that you can easily remember and then using the first letter from each word in the sentence to build your password. There are also password generation tools that can help you create a truly unique series of letters and numbers that cannot be easily guessed (or hacked!).

Can I Use the Same Password for Multiple Accounts?

In short: No! Using the same password for more than one account makes it that much more likely that your “master password” will be hacked by cybercriminals. This not only gives them access to a single account but also all of the accounts that are using your linked password. Using a different password for each potential login helps you put a wall around your accounts and provides added security.

Where Should I Store My Passwords?

The days where it was safe to store your passwords on a Post-It note underneath your keyboard have gone by the wayside. Do not make the mistake of storing your passwords somewhere with limited security. Even if you have a private office, there are still people who are in and out of your space on a regular basis who could conceivably see your password. If you must store them somewhere, look for ways to add a level of security to your password storage. This could mean keeping your passwords inside a locked desk drawer, for example.

The amount of personal information that can be gathered through a password hack is staggering — especially when you consider the wealth of data stored within standard healthcare IT solutions. This makes healthcare computer security an extremely important step in protecting your organization.

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