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Best practices for password management, 2019 edition

It is hard to imagine life today without passwords. They come in many forms, from your email credentials to your debit card PIN number, and they’re all secrets you use to help prove your identity. But traditional password best practices are no match for today’s sophisticated, and often automated, cybersecurity threats. With the all-too-often news of massive data breaches, leaked passwords, and phishing attacks, internet users must adapt to protect their valuable information. 

While passwords are far from perfect, they aren’t going away in the foreseeable future. Google’s automatic protections prevent the vast majority of account takeover attacks—even when an attacker knows the username and password—but there are also measures that users and IT professionals can take to further enhance account security. In the spirit of October being National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, we’ve released two new whitepapers to help you navigate password security.

Modern password security for users provides pragmatic and human-centric advice for end users to help improve your authentication security habits. We go in-depth with tips on improving the security of the passwords you use today, advice on how to answer security questions, and explanations of why certain practices should be avoided.

Modern password security for system designers is the first paper’s technical counterpart, outlining the latest advice on password interfaces and data handling. It provides technical guidance on how to handle UTF-8 characters, advice on sessions, and best practices for building a secure authentication system that can stand up to modern threats.

Our aim is to promote an open and secure internet where users are equipped to protect their personal information and online systems are designed to prevent credential loss, even if those systems are compromised. We hope these whitepapers—available in PDF form at the links above—help you in your quest to better protect your environment.

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