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At the present time no restrictions are in place concerning the complexity, expiry, or history of passwords. Your Shepherd network password must be at least six characters long. While no other restrictions are in place, IT Services recommends that people follow these standards when selecting passwords:

Information security is only as strong as its weakest link. In most cases that is the password chosen to protect the data. More sensitive information should be protected with stronger security methods. While these guidelines may make choosing a password difficult, there are several techniques to use that can generate secure yet memorable passwords. A common technique is to take a sentence, use the first or key letters of each word, and substitute appropriate characters if necessary. For example:

Password strength for fun, if you know how!

can turn into


(Please do not use this or other available password examples as your password.)

Should we begin requiring stronger passwords, or anticipate other changes to our password policies, we will notify the campus community with sufficient notice prior to the implementation of any changes. Changes to authentication requirements typically are motivated by annual audits of our financial information systems to determine that there are adequate controls in place, including the security of passwords used to access the systems. Other changes may come as a result of requirements to comply with particular industry standards for data protection, such as for credit cards or health information.