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The safest way to log into your computer



Whether your computer If you’re running Windows, macOS, or Chrome OS, you have options for signing in. Your choices don’t just affect how convenient you can access your laptop or desktop. it also affects how easily someone else can get access.

These are the different login options that are available and that you need to be aware of. So choose wisely. The right one for you depends on how your computer is set up and how careful you want to be.

Windows

Your Windows Hello PIN is securely stored locally on your computer.

Screenshot: David Nield on Microsoft

You can find the login options for Windows by opening Settings via the gear icon in the Start menu and then selecting Accounts and Login options. By default, your computer is protected by your Microsoft account password. Make sure it’s long, complicated, and impossible to guess. You should also set up two-factor authentication for your account, which you can click to do from here safety then More security options.

One of the alternative sign-in options that you will see is Windows Hello PIN. Microsoft recommends that you use this password in place of your password as it will remain hidden on your device and only apply to a specific device (read more from Microsoft here). As with your Microsoft password, your PIN should be long and something that isn’t obvious, such as. B. Your birthday.

For even better protection, you can switch to Windows hello face or Windows Hello fingerprint Log in with your face or fingerprint – this type of biometric authentication is very difficult to crack, although your hardware has to support it. Most Windows computers now support these features, although you may be unlucky if you are using an older computer.

The Security key Option is another very secure login method. In addition to your password, you need a physical, specially configured security key to gain access to your computer. Even if someone guesses or cracks your password, they cannot gain access. The physical keys are inexpensive, but they must support the FIDO2 standard: Microsoft has extensive information about how keys work and how to obtain them.

Finally there is Image password Option that basically uses a pattern that you draw over an image of your choice as the authentication method. It’s a bit more convenient for you, but it’s also easier for others to hack into – it’s easier to guess a pattern, brutally force it, or just look over your shoulder in a coffee shop or office than it is to replicate your fingerprint, for example.

Mac OS

Touch ID is a secure sign-in method for macOS if you have a MacBook that supports it.

Screenshot: David Nield on Apple


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