Generating secure passwords

Normally for each device, service and software there should be used a unique password. As this isn’t an easy tasks, many people use a default password for a number of services and devices. But using Linux there is a small smart tool that generates passwords easily. This tool is called apg. Furthermore storing all the passwords in a safe enhances comfort and security dramatically.

Generating passwords

In order to generate a password have a look into the manpage of apg. Some useful options are described here:

-m Number of minimum characters
-a Choosing the generation algorithm; 1 generates non pronouncable passwords
-MSNCL Requires at least one special, one numeral, one capital and one small letter symbol
-x Number of maximum characters

In order to generate secure passwords simply use the following command. It generates passwords with a length of 20 characters. The length may be extended of course.

apg -m20 -x20 -a1 -MSNCL

Storing your passwords

Another challange is to memorize all these passwords. Using a password manager is your solution. So you can use a different password for each service, device and software. E.g. when using Firefox it is possible to store all the passwords in a secure way. You just have to remember your master password. Of course this password should be really really tough. Maybe it’s hard to remember, but one password that is really really hard to remember is better than 100 low secure passwords.
The passwords are stored remotely without transferring the content of the password safe unencryptedly or transferring the master password. In case a service was hacked you don’t have to change all the passwords, but only one. Maybe have a look at the firefox documentation.

Sources

  • apg manpage

Links

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