Scrabble Stones laying out the word "password"

Finding a good password


So last week I wrote about the best password manager I know and said, that you basically have to remember one last password. Naturally, this should be very very good, but how can you remember complicated passwords? A couple of years ago, I read somewhere a very nice trick and utilize it ever since.

What is a good password?

So basically, you should use a mix of letters, symbols, numbers as well as upper and lower cases. A password should ideally be 12 characters. That is pretty long, but you should remember, that eight-letter passwords (221 trillion combinations) can be hacked in brute-force attacks within hours. A 12-letter password has over three sextillion combinations and hacking this will take centuries. So try to find something between 8 and 12 characters at least.

As I told last week, KeePass has a built-in generator. It can generate some pretty good and secure passwords. Some examples would be:

  • jGNn~9G=djT;
  • ;/Y’Rn@fxXm+
  • Fkr”%ngQMUeO

Nobody can remember that, right? So how can we create passwords that are good AND easy to remember?

How to create and remember a good password

The trick is rather simple: Use a (or two) well-known phrase(s) and only use the first letters. If the phrase(s) contain(s) numbers and symbols (like & or ?), then you have a perfect password, that is easy to remember. So let’s think about some phrases. Do you know “Kill two birds with one stone” and “Let the cat out of the bag”? That would translate to “K2bw1s&Ltcootb”. That is a killer password!

Another example would be maybe part of a song text. You know the lyrics of Wonderwall?

Because maybe

You’re gonna be the one that saves me

And after all

You’re my wonderwall

Wonderwall, Oasis

That would translate to “BmYgbt1tsm&aaymw” Also a killer password!


So basically the trick is nothing special, but if you are one of these persons who uses their birthday, a dog name or maybe something out of the dictionary, it might come in handy. You should take good care of your password and take the time to come up with something really really good!



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Sebastian Hageneuer

Hi! My name is Sebastian. I am an archaeologist, a university lecturer, freelancer, guitarist, karateka and father. You could say I am quiet busy, so I learned to manage my time and energy to build good habits and still have space for myself and my family. Sounds difficult? Read here how I do it. Every Friday.

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