Create Strong Passwords - Use passphrases and Update regularly

The thing about passwords is, strong ones are far too complicated, annoying, and easy-to-forget. But a weak password can compromise personal information and sensitive data. Learn some helpful tips in creating a strong, easy-to-remember password and watch a playful video on the subject.

Passwords are the keys to securing access to the digital environments we work in, yet, strong passwords tend to be problematic because they are easily forgotten. For ease, users tend to create passwords that are easy for them to remember such as the name of their pets or children - adding a few numbers at the end to meet the system's password length requirement. Unfortunately, these are still very weak passwords that can easily be cracked within hours or days,



Designing Your Secure Password

A common and easy way to create a secure password is to use the first letter of each word from an 8-10 word phrase. In addition to using both upper and lower case characters, substitute "look-alike" numbers and symbols for some of the characters. For example, using the phrase, Sacred Heart Chapel overlooks the bluff at Loyola Marymount, the following base password would be generated: shcotbalm. A better use of this base password might be to substitute the 's' for a '5', the 'o' for a '0' and change the case for the letters 'l' and 'm'. The final more secure 9-character password is 5hc0tbaLM.

This password would take approximately 43 years to crack using a brute-force attack by a dual-processor PC in comparison to the base password that would only take a matter of days to crack.

  • Choosing a strong password

    A strong password...

    • is not guessable by any program in a reasonable time (less than one week).
    • is easily remembered (so there is no need to write it down).
    • is private (it is used and known by one person only).
    • is secret (it does not appear in clear text in any file or program or on a piece of paper pinned to the terminal).

    Why should I choose strong passwords?

    The use of a weak password may allow someone to use your account and therefore to use, modify, corrupt or destroy any of your files or any files that you are allowed to modify. You are ultimately responsible for your accounts even if you intentionally or unintentionally compromise your account by providing your password to others.

    How do I set my password reset security questions?

    Note: this will change on August 9, with the implementation of a new authentication method. 

    • Go to
    • Enter your current LMU credentials.
    • You’ll be presented with 10 questions, but you only have to answer 3 of them.

    I need to reset my password because I have forgotten it, or it has expired.

    Note: this will change on August 9, with the implementation of a new authentication method.

    • Go to
    • Click on Reset Your Password.
    • If you have not already set your password security questions, you will be asked to verify your identity with the last four digits of your SSN and DOB prior to setting your password.
    • If you have set your password security questions, you will be presented with 2 of the 3 questions that you previously set answers for.
    • If you have problems answering the questions, call the ITS Service Desk at 310-338-7777 during regular business hours.