The blog of Windows Wally, a Windows Support Technician helping common people solve frustrating computer problems.



3 Important Security Tips For Using A Microsoft Account

Reader Question:
“Hi Wally, I had to make a Microsoft account to use Windows 8 but I’m not sure whether its as safe as gmail. What can I do to make my Microsoft account absolutely secure from attackers?“ - Thomas D., Canada

Before addressing any computer issue, I always recommend scanning and repairing any underlying problems affecting your PC health and performance:

  • Step 1 : Download PC Repair & Optimizer Tool (WinThruster for Win7, XP, Vista – Microsoft Gold Certified).
  • Step 2 : Click “Start Scan” to find Windows registry issues that could be causing PC problems.
  • Step 3 : Click “Repair All” to fix all issues.

Setting up weekly (or daily) automatic scans will help prevent system problems and keep your PC running fast and trouble-free.

Wally’s Answer: I understand how you feel. Many people started using Windows 8 and thought the same thing when they had to register for a new Microsoft account instead of using their old email or a local username and password. Here I will share 3 really important security tips to give your Microsoft account rock solid security.

Advantages Of Using A Microsoft Account With Windows 8.1

A Microsoft Account has many benefits to the user. The best is probably that the account syncs your Windows 8 settings, apps, files, and other data to the cloud. If you log-into another computer with your Microsoft account, you will see that your settings, wallpapers, apps etc get downloaded automatically. This is useful if you have more than one Windows 8.1 PC or if your computer got stolen and you want all your personal settings in the new computer.

3 Very Important Security Tips For Using Microsoft Accounts

If you are any average computer user then these tips should increase the strength of your Microsoft account’s security in magnitudes.

1. Set A Really Strong Password

  • This is perhaps the most important security tip you will hear whenever you make a new account for anything. If you want the account to be secure then you will need to make a unique password. Many people use the same password in many different places. This means that if one of those passwords is hacked, then others are hacked as well.
  • To change the password of your Microsoft account, you will need to look for the Change your password option after logging-into your account. When setting a new password, try not to use common dictionary words or names, use numbers, letters, symbols, upper and lower case.
  • One backlash to making new passwords is that you may forget the password soon after setting it. Ideally you should generate a really strong password and then store it in a password storage software like PassBank instead of writing it down on a paper somewhere.

2. Use Two-Factor Authentication

You should also use two-factor authentication when logging-into your Microsoft account. This makes it incredibly difficult for anyone to hack your account. You can enable this feature by logging into your Microsoft Account and clicking the Security & Password tab. You should be able to enable two-step verification.

Important Security - Security & Password -- Windows Wally

3. Enter Plenty Of Account recovery Information

This information includes things like other email addresses and a phone number that Microsoft can use in case you lose your password. You will be really glad that you filed this in if that ever happens. This is an important security tip that might save your life.

If you have had your account for ages then you should update this information and make sure that the email and phone number you enter is still usable.

Important Security - Security & Password - Add more Information - Windows Wally

Is Your PC Healthy?

I always recommend to my readers to regularly use a trusted registry cleaner and optimizer such as WinThruster or CCleaner. Many problems that you encounter can be attributed to a corrupt and bloated registry.

Happy Computing! :)

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About the Author

Windows Wally is a helpful guy. It’s just in his nature. It’s why he started a blog in the first place. He heard over and over how hard it was to find simple, plain-English solutions to Windows troubleshooting problems on the Internet. Enter: Windows Wally. Ask away, and he will answer.