Shift Your Fingers One Key To The Right For Easy-to-Remember But Awesome Passwords

You're constantly told how easy it would be to hack your weak passwords, but complicated passwords just aren't something our brains get excited about memorising. Reader calculusrunner offers a brilliant tip that turns weak passwords into something much, much better.

His clever solution: Stick with your weak, dictionary password if you must; just move your fingers over a space on the keyboard.

If you want a secure password without having to remember anything complex, try shifting your fingers one set of keys to the right. It will make your password look like gibberish, will often add in punctuation marks, and is quick and simple.

When John Pozadzides showed us how he'd hack our weak passwords, he listed his top 10 choices for getting started hacking away at your weak passwords. Let's take a look at how a few of those popular passwords fare when run through calculusrunner's method:

  • password => [sddeptf
  • letmein => ;ry,rom
  • money => .pmru
  • love => ;pbr

Something longer but still really lame, like, say, "topsecretpassword", becomes "yp[drvtry[sddeptf". These may not be perfect compared to secure password generators, but they're likely orders of magnitude better than a lot of people's go-to passwords.


    This doesn't really produce stronger passwords (especially if this becomes part of a company policy!).

    A better password tip is to use a passphrase instead of password. Just type a sentence (with your choice of punctuation, capitalization, creative spelling etc).

    That should make dictionary attacks hard enough that an attacker will find a better way to get your password.

    Also, it might be worth using a program like KeePassX (there's a windows version too) with your strong passphrase, then have it generate a random strong password for each site/application you need to login to. Then if one of those are compromised, your access to everything else isn't.

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