Do You Know The Differences Between Password and Pin

As we progress, you understand that you need to protect your PC, phone, and online accounts such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Gmail, Online Wallets, etc. But do you always have to use a long and complex password?
A friend of mine asked about the difference between using a PIN or a password. “To me, they seem to serve the same purpose.”

Like a password, a Personal Information Number (PIN) allows you to prove that you’re you so that no one else can access your data. The apparent difference is that a PIN is limited to numerical digits (0-9), while a password can contain numerical digits, upper- and lowercase letters, and punctuation.
But that doesn’t explain the advantages of each.
PINs are easier to type, especially on a touchscreen. With much fewer options, you can tap a few big buttons rather than many little ones.

So why does anyone use passwords? Because they’re more secure. You have only ten options available for each digit in a PIN. Still, a password can have as many as 95 (assuming it accepts every character you can type on a conventional keyboard, including Space). And the more options you have for each character, the more complex the password is to crack.
How big a difference does this make? There are ten billion possible 10-character PINs. But there are 59,873,693,923,837,900,000 possible 10-character passwords. That’s about eight billion possibilities for every person alive today.

Then consider this: A ten-character password is relatively short, while a ten-digit PIN is unusually long. Most use four or six digits; that’s 10,000 and 1,000,000 possibilities, respectively.
So why would anyone use a PIN when they can use a password?

The real danger of getting your password hacked is on the Internet, so that’s where you need the most protection. Passwords are much safer for online accounts. But PINs are safe enough for unlocking a device that’s in your hands.

Windows 10 makes this difference clear. Assuming that your Windows account is a cloud-based Microsoft account (the default), Windows requires setting up a complex password because it can be hacked in the cloud. But you can also set up a PIN for convenience. This stays on your computer and never goes out into the Internet. Locally, a PIN is safe enough.

Even then, I wouldn’t recommend the standard four-digit PIN. Use six or more.

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