Mac Security

March 22, 2016 Meeting: Mark Wirganowicz and Derek Burrows, Facilitators


Apple ID

  • An online account used to download and install applications from the App Store, manage your iCloud data, and download/purchase entertainment content such as movies, music, and books (iTunes/iBooks/AppleTV).
  • Username: is an email address
  • Password: at least 8 characters, at least 1 capital letter, at least 1 numeral
  • Manage your account online:
  • If you forgot your AppleID password:


Examples of bad passwords

  • 12345678
  • Password
  • qwerty
  • f*ckyouhackers
  • Letmein
  • Using a common word that can be found in a dictionary
  • Using any sort of personal info (names, birthdays, social security numbers, current addresses)
  • Replacing letters with numerals in common words: MapleStreet => M4pleStr33t
    – or- Mimosa => M1m0sa


Password Poems

Study by Ghazvininejad & Knight, 2015 – Univ. of Southern California

Click to access memorize-random-60.pdf

Long human history of oral storytelling and poems. Rhyming poetry has long been used by humans to increase memorability.

The researchers found that by creating a short rhyming poem of random words, a very secure (difficult to hack) yet easy to remember password could be created.

Their formula employs a rhyming iambic tetrameter couplet format, with two lines with eight syllables each, ending with rhyming words.

Sample password generator (do not use any of these!!):

An example from the above site:

Discarding rafters substitutes

campaigns Miami prostitutes

A truly random (and safe) password can be generated here:


Password Phrases


Think of a phrase you will always remember

“A fool and his money are soon parted.”

Take the first letter of each word.


Add some capital letters.


Add some special characters & numbers.


Voila! Easy to remember and just as hard to crack as a randomly generated sequence of characters.