Duke University has announced that its Duke University Press has suffered a data breach. Although no financial information was stolen, usernames and encrypted passwords were stolen. However even though the passwords were encrypted, it is not uncommon for sophisticated hackers to use software programs to decipher passwords that are not particularly strong. This is just the latest hacking of an institution of higher learning. In just the last four months, personal information on more than 750,000 students was stolen in data breaches at Iowa State University, University of Maryland, North Dakota University and Indiana University.
Again, the advice to follow, if you were a victim of the Duke University Press hacking is to change your passwords immediately. It also is a good time to consider changing your passwords for all of your password protected accounts and making them strong enough to withstand hackers’ decryption software. A good password will be a combination of lower case letters and higher case letters, figures and symbols. In order to make the passwords memorable, you can use a phrase, such as “IDon’tLikePasswords**” you can also adapt the password to different accounts, such that you make your Amazon password “IDon’tLikePasswordsAMA**.” In this way you can establish easy to remember, but difficult to decipher passwords.