15. User IDs and passwords

When you log onto your network at school, you have to type in your User ID and Password.

The User ID identifies you to the network as an authorised user. The password is the security to prove that you are the authorised person to whom that user ID belongs.


Any sensible company will ensure that staff need a User ID and Password to gain access to the system. This should reduce the risk of outsiders being able to get onto the system and damage data.


Methods for ensuring passwords remain effective
The IT system

- the system should require you to regularly change your password, usually once a month

- the system should be able to stop you from using a password that you have recently used. Many won't let you use the same one for at least 12 months.

- many systems will check the security of your password and will insist that you use a mixture of letters, numbers or symbols.


Users should ensure that

- passwords are kept secret at all times

- passwords are not something that is easy to guess e.g. a pet's name

- passwords are not written down

- passwords are never given to another person


challenge see if you can find out one extra fact on this topic that we haven't already told you

Click on this link: Password Protection