Keeping your PC and data safe is obviously very important. It’s somewhat bewildering then that many people use the same password on every account, and in the vast majority of cases these cryptic codes are actually anything but.
Research conducted last year showed that some of the most popular passwords in use across the world were 123456, password, and qwerty, none of which would take an enterprising hacker more than about ten seconds to crack. See also: How to manage your passwords with Keepass
It doesn’t have to be this way. Changing your user account password in Windows 10 is quick, easy, and could well be the best thing you do for your digital life this year. In this feature we’ll show you how to do it in a couple of minutes, and keep those nasty, pilfering cyber-thieves guessing.
It's also possible to bypass the login screen by removing the need to enter a password, but this is a big security risk.
How to change Windows 10 user password: in brief
- Press the Windows key
- Select Settings> Accounts> Sign-In Options
- Click the Change button in the Password section
- Re-enter your password
- Create new password
How to change your Windows 10 user account password: in detail
To begin the process you’ll need to open up the Start menu. Do this by pressing the Windows key, then select Settings> Accounts > Sign in options. In the main pane you’ll find a password section with a button marked Change, click this.
Windows will ask you to confirm your password. Once this is done you’ll be asked to enter it again, alongside your new one. Complete this, ensuring that you use a mixture of numbers, symbols, and letters for your new one, but of course making it something you can actually remember.
When you’re happy, click Next and Windows will confirm that your new password has been accepted. To check that everything is as it should be, lock your PC and enter your new creation to unlock it again.
Changing your password to a PIN code
If the dizzying mixture of uppercase, lowercase, symbol, and numeric characters that comprise the safest passwords feels a little overwhelming, you can always use a PIN code instead. To do this press the Windows key, select Settings> Accounts> Sign in options, then beneath the Password section you’ll see one entitled PIN.
Click the Add button, enter your Windows password, and then you’ll be able to create a PIN instead, which you can use to login to all of your Windows devices. Here’s a tip though, 123456 isn’t a good choice.