Password Security Tips for Seniors

Senior Living
Image of hands typing on a keyboard.

Posted: September 22, 2021

A 2018 Pew Research Center survey found that 66% of Americans over 65 were internet users. This number is increasing all the time with everything moving to digital. At Bella Vita we understand the rules are rapidly changing on what needs to be done for older adults to be safer online, and we want to make sure all the information is accessible to residents. It can be hard for seniors or anyone to stay up to date on what hackers are doing lately to steal your information, and what to watch for. It is very easy to fall for one of their traps or to not protect your valuable information on the internet. The easiest way to stay safe online is to have a secure password for all of your accounts. That’s why we’ve put together these password security tips.

Changing Your Passwords

The rules are rapidly changing on what we need to do to be safer online. It can be hard for seniors or anyone to stay up to date on what hackers are doing this month and what to watch for. It is very easy to fall for one of their traps or not protect your valuable information now that almost everything is digital.

Hackers and the tactics they use to get access to personal information is evolving quickly and we need to be prepared. The first line of defense for all of us is our password. We began with passwords that were easy to remember, like a birthday or a family members name. Until recently we felt comfortable with 8 characters with upper and lower case and maybe a number or a special character like an “!”. We are supposed to change these passwords every 90 days as well.

It’s all become so complicated! Security experts are now telling us we need to have a different password for every online account we have. The new recommendations also include making passwords at least 14 character’s long using all 4-character sets: upper case, lower case, numbers, and special characters. Finally enabling multi-Factor or 2-Factor Authentication is being offered by financial institutions and businesses to add another layer of security to prove you are who you say you are.

Can you imagine, keeping a unique 14-character passwords for Netflix, Comcast, Walmart, Wells Fargo, etc. Between a couple’s leisure, financial and business accounts, this can be over 225 accounts that you need to keep track of all the different passwords. This can become overwhelming and unorganized very quickly.

How Can Seniors Keep Their Passwords Organized?

Our number one password security tip is to use a Password Management application. Think of a Password Manager as a key lock box, that takes a key to get other keys; there are free and for fee packages that will sync this information across your different devices, phones, pads, and computers.

Password Management Software

Let’s be honest we all just want to be able to enjoy our retirement and not worry about all these passwords. To do so, using a password management software is easy and won’t take up most of your day trying to remember a password. This software does it all for you and keeps you organized so you can enjoy your retirement without fear of being hacked.

So, what should you look for in a password management software?

  • Password generator
  • Password strength reports
  • 2-factor authentication
  • Auto-fill web forms
  • Password management for apps
  • Password management for off-line passwords (such as ATM passwords)
  • Automated password change features
  • Password synching across multiple devices

Do some research and make an informed decision on something that can assist you to keep track of your online accounts and security.  Whether you have trouble remembering to change your passwords, aren’t good at creating unique ones, or simply struggle to keep track of all the passwords, we can get a little help to make us safer out there! Learn more about how we strive to keep residents safe and enjoying life at Bella Vita.

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Bella Vita respects your privacy and never sells or trades your personal information.

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