If you think that your PlayStation Network (PSN) account might no longer be secure – because, for instance, someone else (such as your child) knows your password – your first step should be to change your password. This will prevent unauthorised access to your settings or unwanted charges to your account. But before you do, read on for three tips on creating a strong new password, including a fourth that isn’t actually related to your password. This extra tip is to add an extra layer of security to your account with 2-Step Verification.

Tip 1: Use a passphrase

Instead of a single word, you should use a memorable phrase of roughly three or four words as your password. This will be easier to remember, more complex, and safer than a word chosen at random followed by a string of numbers and characters.

First, try to think of a subject that is meaningful to you, such as a favourite book, movie or sport. Just don’t use names of family members or personal details such as your address, as these will be easy to guess. Then add a word associated with that first subject, and then one or two more.

For example, say your favourite movie is The Sixth Sense. Movies make you think of popcorn, and popcorn always makes you thirsty. This makes it easy to remember “6thSense-popcorn&thirsty!”, even though it’s a relatively long password that contains 25 characters. “6thSense-popcorn&thirsty!” is also a good password because it follows the next tip.

Tip 2: Include special characters

When creating a password, you should always use a combination of lower case letters, capital letters, special characters (such as £, &, ?, and !), and numbers. Many websites will require that you do this anyway, and one easy way to make sure that you include special characters is to use look-a-like characters. For example, use O or 0, and L or £.

Tip 3: Keep it secret, keep it safe

Now that you’ve created the perfect password that contains multiple words and special characters, the next step is to make sure your passwords are secured offline as well. It is not advisable to write down your account details, but if you do, be sure to keep them in a safe location known only to you.

How to change your password

If you’re still logged into your PlayStation, or if you know your existing Sony Entertainment Network (SEN) account password, changing your password will be very straightforward. Click the button for a step-by-step guide to changing your password through the PlayStation 4 settings menu, or follow the instructions below.

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Navigate to Account Management.
  3. Open the Account Information menu.
  4. Open the Security menu.
  5. Select Password and follow the on-screen instructions.

If you’re no longer logged in on your PlayStation 4 and you’ve forgotten your current password, you will have to reset your password. Find easy instructions in our article How to reset your PlayStation Network password.

Set up 2-Step Verification

The ultimate tip for a more secure account isn’t related to your actual password, but to setting up a second layer of security. 2-Step Verification is one of the safest and easy-to-use security measures available. With 2-Step Verification enabled, a verification code will be sent to your mobile phone and this code will be required – in addition to your password – to sign into your account. Find out more in our article How to protect your PlayStation Network account with 2-Step Verification, or go ahead and follow the set-up instructions below.

I received an email prompting me to reset my password

For security reasons, Sony Entertainment Network (SEN) will sometimes ask you to change the password you use to access its services such as PlayStation Network (PSN). However, if the email you received doesn't state that the reset was initiated by SEN, someone may be trying to gain access to your account. You should change your password immediately.

Fortunately, changing your PSN password is a piece of cake with our step-by-step instructions.

Do you suspect that someone may be trying to gain access to your account? You may want to check out our article Has my account been compromised? or How to reset your PlayStation Network password. If you’re a parent who would like to learn more about the game console your kids love so much, check out related articles such as How to protect your account with 2-Step Verification and How to set up your family for PlayStation Network access. If you require further assistance, try searching for a solution to your issue on the main PlayStation support website.