Despite drastic changes so far in 2020, the one thing that has stayed somewhat the same is data security, with the Wawa convenience stores data breach becoming the third-largest credit card breach in history. The fact that even big names are still falling victim to data breaches highlights the importance of having strong security measures in an organization.

One of the most basic security measures is to ensure that the passwords set by employees are strong enough to withstand a breach. Following password guidelines such as the ones set by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) can be a great start towards fortifying password security. The question that arises is why NIST password guidelines are so effective. To begin to answer that question, let’s take a look at what NIST is.

NIST is a non-regulatory agency funded by the United States Department of Commerce. Since 1901, NIST has aimed to provide standards for various industries. Over the years, NIST has grown to become an authoritative voice on establishing standards and best practices for securing digital identities. Being a federal agency, NIST regulates all the governmental organizations in the United States. It is mandatory for government agencies of the United States, like the FBI, USDA, and NSA, to adhere to NIST guidelines.

Because of the significant authority that NIST has, its guidelines are well-thought-out and of the highest caliber. Even some businesses have followed these guidelines to ensure they remain on par with the security of government agencies. However, not all organizations have followed suit, and there is a difference between NIST’s password guidelines and the common password practices that organizations follow. You can download our e-book to learn more about current password practices, how they compare with NIST’s password guidelines, and how you can implement NIST guidelines in your organization.