How Often Should You Change Your Password? – Why is it Important?

Everyone uses passwords. Most platforms and networks require you to set up a unique password. But have you ever wondered why we change passwords often? As mentioned in our previous blogs, hackers are smarter now than ever. This means it is important for individuals, and companies, to ensure they have secure passwords that keep hackers out. Maintaining an Identity and Access Management (IAM) plan when enforcing a password on users can be extremely helpful for businesses. 

Why change passwords?

Changing passwords on a regular basis is often mandatory in many organisations primarily to improve cybersecurity posture. Changing passwords on a regular basis is an essential defence against ever-evolving dangers like malware, phishing, and data breaches. By doing this, we reduce the possibility of unauthorised access, limit potential damage, and align with regulatory and organisational standards. This practice is essential to staying ahead of cyber threats and safeguarding our digital assets.

Why should you not change passwords?

Changing passwords too frequently, on the other hand, can set some drawbacks. Frequent changes can be inconvenient and lead users to choose weaker, easier-to-remember passwords that defeat the purpose of a frequent password change. Studies have shown that mandatory password changes don’t significantly improve security compared to focusing on a strong password. Mandating a frequent password change increases the chance of people reusing the same password or cycling through variations of the same password, which simply lessen the security benefit.

How often should you change passwords?

The frequency of changing your password depends on the environment maturity, regulatory mandates and industry specific best practices. According to most recommendations, you should change your passwords at least once a year, or more frequently if you use the same password for several accounts or suspect a compromise. Long and arbitrary passwords are recommended; common or private information like names, dates, or words should be avoided. Complexity requirements, such as requiring the use of one lowercase and one uppercase letter, one number, one special character, and a minimum number of characters, can also be helpful in assisting users in maintaining a strong password for their log-in.

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is also recommended to add an extra layer of security to the login process. With MFA and password requirements in practice, it can reduce the need for frequent password changes by making it much harder for attackers to access accounts with just a password.

How to monitor and review password policies?

To ensure that your password policies are effective and appropriate, you need to monitor and evaluate their impact and performance regularly. IAM metrics can be used to track and measure password-related activities such as password changes, resets, failures, breaches, or complaints. IAM audits can also be used to assess password policies and identify any issues that need to be improved. Monitoring and reviewing password policies allow you to adjust and optimise them as needed, and ensure that they meet security and usability goals.

Overall, the importance of password security cannot be overstated. While password changes can be extremely valuable in mitigating risks, excessive frequency can compromise security by encouraging weaker passwords. Therefore, encouraging complex passwords and striking a balance is our recommendation for organisations trying to improve their cyber security. MFA is another great way to further protect your business from breaches and is another strong recommendation from IP Partners Professionals in safeguarding your assets.

for assistance with setting up MFA in your organisation or with implementing a IAM visit our website to or call us on (08) 7200 6080.

To keep up to date with important business and technology news and information follow us on:

Instagram – Facebook – Twitter – LinkedIn

Adelaide Office
Melbourne Office
Sydney Office
Brisbane Office