Office 365 Password Expired?With cyber threats at the rise, securing your Office 365 account is of paramount importance. A fundamental practice to safeguard your digital assets is changing your password regularly – and making sure it’s a reliable and robust one! While it’s easy to ignore this until your company’s password policy forces you to act, it’s never too late to strengthen your security. In this article, we’ll go through the steps to update your Office 365 password before it has expired, explore the evolving landscape of Office 365 password expiration policies, and remind you about successful password patterns.
The Evolution of Password Expiration Policies
In recent years, network security has risen to the top of the priority list for any corporation or organization. Implementing password expiration policies was one of the first steps in fortifying cloud-stored data, and Office 365 was no exception. These regulations required regular password changes, lowering the risk of data breaches and predictable symbol combinations. However, given technological improvements, it’s essential to reconsider if password expiration regulations can still solve potential issues.
The cybersecurity world has been watching this closely, especially after Microsoft’s security team attempted to abandon password expiration regulations. Their reasoning was simple: the requirement to change them frequently, badly affects Office 365 password complexity, as users tend to construct simpler, more predictable combinations that are easy for hackers to crack.
How to Update Your Office 365 Password
Assume you notice your Outlook password has expired one day. Clearly, if your Microsoft password expired, it’s crucial to reset it promptly to maintain the security of your account. Don’t panic and do the following:
- Access the Office 365 Portal: To kick off the process, open your web browser and head to the Office 365 Portal at https://portal.microsoftonline.com/.
- Try logging in with your existing (expired) password. As expected, you’ll receive a notification that it has expired.
- Follow the on-screen prompts to create a new, secure one.
- After creating your new password, ensure it works by restarting your browser. Sign in again at https://portal.microsoftonline.com/ with your updated credentials.
- Don’t forget to update your credentials on your iPhone and/or Outlook for Mac email application to match the one you’ve just set.
- To stay on top of password changes, consider setting a recurring reminder. While Microsoft starts to send reminders 14 days prior password expiration but these emails can go unnoticed.
Office 365 Password Policy: Length, Complexity, and Expiry Duration
Although much has been said about the rules of creating reliable passwords, breaches occur regularly. Let’s go through the fundamentals once again:
- Password Length: A minimum of 8 characters is required but remember that longer isn’t necessarily better. Extremely long combinations can sometimes lead to predictable word choices.
- Password Complexity: A strong one combines uppercase and lowercase letters (A-Z, a-z), numbers (0-9), and non-alphabetic symbols (!, @, #, _, -, etc.). Avoid using usernames, birthdates, or personal details, as these are more vulnerable to unauthorized access.
- Password Expiry Duration: By default, passwords expire every 90 days. However, you can modify or disable this expiration feature as needed.
When Should You Change Your Password?
There are number of situations when immediate password change is essential. Among the most common ones are:
- If you suspect your credentials were compromised, change it immediately. Also, update passwords across all accounts where you’ve used the same one.
- If you’ve shared your password with a colleague or friend, it’s a red flag – change it as soon as possible.
- If you notice someone looking at your keyboard when you log in your system or app.
- If you’ve unwittingly provided your password on a phishing website, change it without any delay.
- If your current password lacks strength, don’t postpone changing it to the stronger one.
Regardless of the trigger, remember to select a new password unrelated to the old one and avoid reusing passwords from other accounts.
Successful Office 365 Password Patterns
Here are some tried-and-true tips to encourage password diversity within your company:
- Prohibit the use of widely known and frequently used combinations like “adminadmin,” “123456,” and “qwerty.”
- Emphasize that users should never reuse organization passwords on external websites, significantly reducing the risk of compromise.
- Encourage enabling multi-factor authentication (MFA) for better protection. MFA requires users to provide two or more forms of authentication, enhancing security against unauthorized access.
To sum up, ensuring the strength and uniqueness of your Office 365 password remains essential, and the most important methods to improve your account’s defence against cyber-attacks are regular password changes and adherence to password security policies.
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