Choosing a Secure Password

password

Choosing a password can be a daunting task. You must choose one that no one can guess but you can remember! Here are some guidelines to help you.

  • When choosing a new password, do not re-use any of your past passwords.
  • Pick a password that has at least 8 characters. Generally speaking, the longer your password is, the more secure it is.
  • Your password should contain at least one alphabetical character (a-z).
  • Passwords are case-sensitive and can have both upper and lower case letters. Using MiXeD case in your password increases its security.
  • Your password should contain at least one non-alphabetical character,which is not the first or last character of the password.
  • Including numbers and punctuation increases the strength of your password.
  • Using a long phrase, up to 63 characters creates a very strong password/pass phrase.
  • Do not use any personal information (name, address, phone number, social security number, UCI employee ID number) as any part of a password.

One helpful technique for choosing a secure password is to think of a phrase you can remember. Take the first letter of each word in the phrase, then change some letters to mixed case or numbers or punctuation. For example, the famous movie line “Louie, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship” could become the password “LItt1tb0abf”.  Note the two capital letters and the two digits.

PSearch: NACS and ICS Collaborate

PSearch

Faculty and staff now have a powerful new tool for finding contacts through UCI’s online phone directory.  PSearch melds the directory data NACS maintains with state-of-the-art database research from the lab of ICS Professor Chen Li.

PSearch allows users to enter whatever information they may happen to have (first name, last name, department, phone number, etc.) and PSearch will offer any entries in the campus phone directory which match.  PSearch is error tolerant (you can find people with only an approximation of the spelling of a name) and real time (results are displayed and refined as you enter information.)

PSearch represents a collaboration between NACS and ICS.  Professor Li’s team offered the intelligent database search technology, and NACS offered the data and our user-interface experience.  Key contributors on Professor Li’s team include PhD student Rares Vernica at UCI and Guoliang Li, a visiting researcher from Tsinghua University, China.

PSearch is only one potential use of Dr. Li’s “type-ahead search” technology featured on his TASTIER project web page.  Future uses may involve other campus-wide or even UC-wide data sets.  This new technology makes it possible to simultaneously support full-text (google), quick-link, and directory searches in a single query as exhibited by the search box on the ICS home page.