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Strong Password Tips

FBRI and Univeristy password requirements:

  •  Minimum length should be at least "12"
  •  Number of special characters to include "1"
  •  Must contain both upper and lowercase characters 
  •  Number of numerals to include "1"
  •  Maximum length should not exceed "64"
  •  Must not contain any character more than twice consecutively 
  •  Must not have 5 consecutive characters from username 
  • Cannot re-use any of your last 5 passwords
  • Must not use any of the same passwords for 5 cycles
Passwords expire and require a new one be set every 180 days.

NOTE: You may bypass these requirements if you use a password of 20 characters or more.
TIP: Use a song lyric or quote / phrase that includes spaces and punctuation!

Important: Never Send Your Password by Email

Virginia Tech will NEVER ask you to send your password via email. Do not respond to emails that ask for your user ID or password; such emails are phishing (VT) | phishing (FBRI) attempts.

General Tips for Creating Strong Passwords

  • The longer the password is the stronger it may be.

  • Try combining the first letters of each word in a phrase or song to produce the password. This produces a password that is random and still easy to remember.

  • To help you remember all of your passwords, think of a standard password that meets all of the above requirements, and add a modifier that is distinct to each service to the beginning or end of the standard password.

  • Try including the symbol(s) and number(s) not just at the end of a password. Try using a varying combination of lower and upper case letters in the password.

Don't Use These in Your Passwords

Cyber criminals know all of these tricks.  They even use automated programs to guess passwords based on the following items:

  • An alphabetic series either forwards or backwards such as "ABCDEF" or "FEDCBA"

  • A numeric series, either forwards or backwards such as "123456" or "654321"

  • A string of identical letters or numbers such as "AAAAAA" or "111111"

  • A sequence of letters on the keyboard such as "ASDFG" or "QWERTY"

  • Your name or user name, or any variation thereof, such as your name or user name spelled backwards, with mixed case letters

  • A word(s) that can be easily associated with you, such as the name of your spouse, child, pet, favorite football team, or literary character

  • A common word that you might find in a dictionary

Keep Your Strong Password Secure

Passwords are an important part of daily activity and computer security. Cyber criminals spend a lot of time trying to guess passwords. Maintaining strong passwords and changing passwords on a regular basis can help protect Virginia Tech’s systems and information.

  • Use different passwords on each account.

  • Change your passwords at regular intervals.

  • Never write your passwords down.

  • Never share your password with others.

  • Never send your password via email.

  • Never reply to any email that requests your password or other personal information; delete the email.
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  1. Jed Krisch

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