It’s tempting to make passwords easy to remember, or to use the same one to log on to multiple sites. The same applies to security questions: it seems faster and more convenient to choose the same question (and answer) for multiple sites.
However, if the security of your identity is compromised, most likely you will spend weeks or even months trying to repair all the damage done.
Take a few extra moments to create passwords using at least eight characters and a combination of numbers and letters. Some security experts advise changing a password every six months.Try to choose security questions and answers that would be more difficult for a stranger to guess. Do not choose security questions that are a matter of public record such as, mother’s maiden name, what city you were born in, etc. And use different sets of questions and answers for different sites.
Using 9876 or 1234 for a PIN makes it easier for someone to steal your identity. Using the last four digits of your Social Security number is even less secure and really asking for trouble. Try to choose a set of four numbers that makes sense or has meaning for you (not days, months, or years of birthdays) but would seem random to someone else.
Above all, never divulge your password or PIN. If you must write it down, keep it in a secure, locked cabinet or box at home. Never take your password or PIN anywhere with you.