Password breaches have increased in today’s digital age, with cybercriminals trying new methods to gain unauthorized access to people’s information – especially user’s passwords. In 2022 alone, there were approximately 22 billion records including usernames and passwords, personal info, and credit card numbers that were breached by hackers. So today we’ll go over five of the most effective ways to protect yourself from password breaches: multi-factor authentication, IP whitelisting, single sign-on and active directory, password policies, and public and private key pairs.
Source: 55 Important Password Statistics You Should Know: 2023 Breaches & Reuse Data – by Finances Online
Top 5 Password Protection Methods
Password policies are a set of rules that define the requirements for password creation. These policies may include password length, complexity, and expiration requirements. Organizations can reduce the risk of password breaches caused by weak or easily guessable passwords by enforcing strong password rules. Password guidelines should be reviewed regularly and modified to meet the most recent security requirements.
Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
MFA is a security measure that requires users to provide two or more authentication factors to access their accounts. These factors can be something the user knows (like a password), something they own (like a token or code from a smartphone), or something they are (such as biometric information like fingerprints or facial recognition). A majority of everyday usage comes with mobile device authentication using texts, emails, and authenticator codes. MFA adds an extra layer of security to your accounts and makes unauthorized user access much more difficult.
Single Sign-On (SSO) and Active Directory
SSO is a method that allows users to access multiple systems or applications using only a single set of credentials. Active Directory (AD) is a Microsoft technology that provides centrally controlled authentication and authorization for systems running Windows. Organizations can simplify user account management and reduce the risk of password breaches by implementing having users create strong passwords. Users are less likely to reuse passwords across different systems when they only have to remember one set of login credentials.
Private and Public Key Pairs
Public and private key pairs can be used during secure data transmissions. This allows users to authenticate with a matching set of complex algorithms – a public key widely distributed, while the private key is kept secret. When a user wants to send encrypted data, they encrypt the message with the recipient’s public key. The recipient then decrypts the message using their private key. Organizations can ensure that sensitive data transmissions are secure even if an attacker intercepts the data by using public and private key pairs.
IP Whitelisting is a method of restricting access to a system or application based on a predefined list of IP addresses. This technique is particularly useful for businesses with restricted staff or a specialized group of users who need access to resources. This method is efficient for places such as banks or legal firms who need to transfer confidential data only from authorized devices and locations. You can greatly reduce the risk of security breaches by restricting access to only the specified IP addresses.
You may greatly lower the danger of password breaches and safeguard your sensitive data from cybercriminals by implementing these five steps into practice. In fact you can use a combination of these practices at the same time for even more security. You can act now to protect your important data by using Hosted FTP as your file transfer solution.
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