The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Passwords to change for college protection

By Mark Bauer/editor-in-chief

TCC students and staff have lengthy passwords to look forward to as part of a new feature intended to keep prying eyes away from confidential student information.

As a result of a rise in sophistication involved with cases of identity theft and online hacking, TCC is lengthening passwords on WebAdvisor and CampusCruiser to prevent any potential security threats.

The new passwords must be 15 to 50 characters long and may include letters, numbers, spaces and special characters.

“[Students] may think that this is going to make remembering their password more difficult, but there are strategies that will actually make it easier for them to remember,” Mary Robbins, associate vice chancellor of information services, said.

Robbins said by combining a string of words together, or creating a sentence or phrase, students might be more successful at memorizing the password.

“For example, my favorite movie is Gone with the Wind starring Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable,” she said. “Use the first letter of each word, and your password would be mfmigwtwsvlacg1.”

Password hints and three security questions—all made up by the user—will be available if a student forgets his or her password.

Robbins said that correctly answered security questions and hints will automatically reset the password and allow students to log in right away without having to wait for a new password to be sent in an e-mail.

Additional restrictions aimed at improving the overall security of the network are included in the change. 

After 180 days, students must change their password. When updating, students are not allowed to use their previous three passwords, and if the wrong password is entered six consecutive times, a 30-minute lock will automatically be placed on the account.

“We believe the new policy will add security to our site and provide better service for everyone,” Robbins said.

The new policy will go into effect Feb. 19, and any users who log in after that date will be required to update their password to meet the new criteria.

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