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Why the 90 Day Rule for Password Changing?

Updated Mon, January 30, 2023 1:16 EST

Most companies these days put a lot of emphasis on cyber security. However, it is not hard to understand why. With so many instances of massive cyber-attacks t rd for most companies these days. Firstly, it allows the company to protect against the possibility of a security breach that has not happened yet. Secondly, it also ensures protection from all possible data security threats that probably have already happened, but they are still not known to the company management.

IT departments strongly recommend their official departments set new passwords once in 90 days. In some offices, the departments do the same in about 60 or 30 days. These are the timeframes for new passwords in most offices. Many of the corporate software applications used in office settings also have their default dates set in this way. One primary reason behind changing the passwords is to prevent breaching of the company’s data systems. Moreover, it helps save potential data when any application or website gets breached by a hacker.

Many users like reusing their passwords. It means that more than a single website or account will have the same password. So, when a user’s single password gets compromised, it can give the hacker access to their official accounts. Hence, it is important to change passwords frequently. When new passwords are set to the official accounts, it makes things a lot harder for the attackers to access the data in the company network even when they have the password of some other account.

Password changing offering protection from internal security threats

There is yet another reason to change the password from time to time. It can protect against possible attacks or breaches against the company itself. The reason is that for most people, the username they use is a combination of their name initials, or possibly their email addresses. These bits of information are all publicly available. Anybody looking to attack the company can use the partial login information for such purposes. The hackers try multiple methods to break the security of the company data. Hence, these criminals try different types of potential passwords. They combine them with usernames for getting inside the data systems of any company.

It is always a good idea to change the passwords at regular intervals so that such attempts become futile. When you change your passwords regularly, it can become difficult for hackers to get into the system successfully. While the hackers can still manage to breach inside the system, thus changing the passwords frequently can make things harder. It is a well-known fact that targeting people with less security is always preferable to going after those with stringent security. The idea behind this is that when the attacker sees it is complicated to break into your system, they will stop trying. Instead, they will look for other soft targets that make things easier for ill-practices.

Therefore, you need to note that changing passwords is a crucial way of ensuring security for the entire data system at your workplace. You get to deviate from any attacks that the hackers may attempt. Moreover, you also protect the system from any possible attacks that may have already occurred without you being aware of it. Hence, it is a good idea to change your passwords once every 90 days, even if it seems like an inconvenience to you.

Intricate possibilities of cyber attacks

Changing the passwords once every 90 days provide you with the mental assurance that the data systems in your company are free from potential attacks. If the attackers access some of the older backups of the data, this approach can mitigate some risks associated with such a data breach. If the attackers get into the system and get hold of the shadow password files, they can start using them to carry out brute force attacks without actually accessing the system further. After discovering your password, they intrude into the system and install any malware or other application they want as a form of the back door. The only way to prevent this is to change the password so that these attackers won’t cause damage even when they have the shadow password files.

In case the algorithm used for the password hash is sufficiently secure, you can prevent any critical attack from taking place for 90 days. Even in password expiration, the attackers won't gain much data from your shadow password file. They can only get the list of people you have in your company, i.e. the user accounts.

The abovementioned factors illustrate why it is considered beneficial to change the passwords once every 90 days. You can also click here if you want to know more about securing your company’s data systems.