We all know that longer passwords are more secure… but they don’t do any good if you can’t remember them. I won’t go through the math, but each character you add to a password makes it significantly harder to break. The problem is how to create a 10 to 20 character password that you can still remember.

Here are two tips:

1. Use a favorite movie quote

Make a random-looking set of characters from a favorite movie quote.

Are you a Star Wars fan? Add “liayf” or “mtfbwy” (Luke, I am your father, May the force be with you) to your current password. That five or six extra random looking characters, but easy to remember if you know the quote.

If you are a classics fan, you can go with “hlayk” (Here’s looking at you kid). Or maybe you are more the “gammd” (Go ahead, make my day) type?

Throw in a symbol character between your current password and the new extension and you have exponentially increased your security, without having to memorize anything.

Old Password: “purple13”
New Password: “purple13.mtfbwy” (old password, period, May the force be with you.)

2. Build a word string

If you don’t like random character strings, you can build a random looking word string. Find something you can visualize and build a random looking word string from it.

For example, in my home office I have six framed pictures of old trains on my wall in matching black frames. My random word string could be “6TrainsBlack”. It would be easy for me to remember, and it adds 12 characters to my password that would be extremely difficult to break.

Again, add a symbol character and stick this on the end of your current password:

Old Password: “purple13”
New Password: “purple13#6TrainsBlack” (old password, pound sign, pictures in my home office.)

Add capital letters, symbols, and numbers to meet any website requirements.

Give it a try!