Saturday September 18, 2021

updated - September 18, 2021 Saturday EDT

Five Ways to Take Control of Company Passwords

Aug 29, 2021 07:25 PM EDT | By David Thompson
Five Ways to Take Control of Company Passwords
(Photo : pixabay)

There are a lot of complex issues you have to face at work, but it's often the simplest things that can cause the biggest headaches. Dealing with passwords is one of those things!

It's important for your employees to use passwords at work, but that doesn't mean you want to be thinking about the quality of the dozens of passwords your employees are required to use. You may also find yourself frustrated when dealing with and trying to remember your own passwords!

You will never get away from dealing with passwords at least a little bit, but if you put in the time to do the things on this list, you'll find yourself thinking and worrying about the passwords in your office a lot less.

Invest in an IGA System

If you're struggling to deal with passwords in the office, consider an identity governance administration (IGA) program. This type of software system focuses on identity governance and identity administration to help you segregate duties and deal with device and user provisioning.

Although this kind of program used to be primarily for large enterprises, the market now offers models that work for smaller enterprises too. This kind of program makes dealing with passwords better because it enables you to connect systems, automate giving and removing access, and more while logging detailed information that enables you to conduct better analysis of that data.

Plus, it's something you can hire someone else to do! That way they can manage the day-to-day functioning of the system so you don't have to.

Make Sure Everyone Knows the Importance of Complex Passwords

It is important that everyone knows exactly how to create a strong password. Everyone who has access to essential systems in your workplace should know the importance of choosing details like:

  • Minimum of 12 characters
  • Numbers, symbols, capital, and lower case letters
  • No dictionary or combination of dictionary words
  • No obvious substitutions (like replacing o with 0)

That's a good start, but it's also important that your employees take creating complex passwords seriously, which means making sure they understand how important it is to choose a complex password. Discuss cyber threats and IT reports at meetings so they can see how their choice of passwords directly impacts the business.

Reconsider Frequent Password Updates

Changing passwords all the time is annoying. The standard used to be changing passwords every three months, but most experts today agree that there's no need to change passwords at all. That is, as long as everyone's passwords meet two requirements.

First, everyone has to choose truly complex passwords that are impossible to guess. Second, a password can't have been compromised. If it has, everyone should change their passwords right away.

Not requiring frequent password updates can save everyone a lot of time. It can also discourage employees from choosing easy passwords, which is what they're likely to do if they have to update their passwords all the time.

Use Multifactor Authentication

If you use multifactor authentication, you have even less of a need to update passwords frequently, so find ways to integrate it into your office!

Multifactor authentication requires employees to provide information from another source in order to log in. For example, they may have to enter a code that is sent to their email address or texted to their phone.

This process can become just as cumbersome and irritating as changing passwords all the time, so make sure it is only enabled when employees are accessing company systems on new devices or internet connections.

Reduce the Use of Passwords Where You Can

It seems like more passwords would make things more secure, but it doesn't support productivity in the office. Not to mention, the more passwords employees have to use, the less likely they are to choose complex passwords.

Find ways to reduce the use of passwords where you can. That might involve using an IGA system like the one mentioned above, but it might also mean reassessing who on your team has access to which systems, and figuring out which systems can be combined to reduce the number of passwords that employees have to use in the office.

Passwords can get out of hand quickly, causing a lot of grief for you and others in the office. The solution isn't more passwords! You can actually make your systems more secure and make life easier for everyone at the same time when you rethink exactly how you use and manage passwords at work.

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