User Account Security

Please review our tips for user account security below to learn ways to help secure your digital life.

1. Create a strong user account password.

  • The best passwords are long and contain a mix of uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.
  • Passwords should not be based on words because of the risks of them being discovered by dictionary attack techniques.
  • Stonehill password requirements include a minimum of 8 characters, and this is a good minimum for other sites.

2. Create a password that is easy to remember, for you not others.

  • Family member’s names, birthdays and pet names are easy passwords for others to guess, so try to use a word or phrase that is memorable but tough for others to decipher.

3. Never share your user account password with anyone.

  • Never write down your password and leave it accessible for anyone to find – this includes sending it in an email

4. Do not use the same password for everything.

  • If your password is the same for Gmail, your Stonehill account, your bank account, and Twitter and one of your accounts is hacked, they all may easily be compromised.

5. Change your password frequently.

  • Your Stonehill password is required to be changed every 180 days, but you may change it at any time using the Password Change Service.
  • While some web-based services may not force a password change, it's a good practice to change them periodically.

6. Always make sure to lock any device (computer, cell phone, tablet, etc.) if you will be away from it for any period of time.

  • If a device is left unattended, data and account information can easily be accessed and stolen.

7. Protect PINs which may be used with bank cards, credit cards, and voicemail accounts.

  • Make sure to keep your PINs confidential and protected, including covering a keypad if typing in a public area.
  • Change your PINs regularly.

8. Reputable organizations will never ask for your username and password, or other confidential information.

  • Never give your password to anyone, especially through an email or a link.
  • Do not give confidential information to anyone unless you are sure that they are who they claim to be and that they should have access to the information..

9. Use a passphrase for your password instead of a word based password.

  • A passphrase is simply a different way of creating a much longer password using a meaningful phrase.
  • A passphrase can be a favorite song lyric, a quote from a book, magazine, or movie, or something your kids said last week.
  • Dictionary words and names are combined with letters, numbers and symbols, without spaces.
  • Some example passphrases are:
    • IwillgraduateIn2014
    • ToB0ldlyGo
    • ILikeMilk&C00kies

Additional Resources: