KOUNT BLOG - Sep 12 - The long-accepted norm that strong passwords require a mix of letters, numbers, and special characters has been challenged by Bill Burr, a 72-year-old former manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. He and other researchers now suggest to use the longest word or phrase you can remember, even if it’s understandable or comprehensible. The reason is that the advances in computing power have made it easier for hackers to try millions of combinations in very little time. Thus, shorter words or phrases provide fewer combinations for these bot attacks to run through before "cracking the code." The phrase "CorrectHorseBatteryStaple" would take 550 years for a computer to compromise. On the other hand, a unique spelling of the word "troubadour" with a couple of unique characters appended at the end (i.e., Tr0ub4dor&3) would require only 3 days to crack due to its shorter length. Also having word phrases that are more easily remembered makes it much easier for consumers to use a different password for every account, which at the end of the day, is the most critical aspect of password security.