Personal identification numbers, also known as PINs, are required for the vast majority of electronic banking and financial transactions. As a means of protecting mobile devices and personal computers, they are also becoming more commonplace. Trying to remember all of these different numbers at the checkout can be difficult, and it can be embarrassing if you forget your PIN or your credit card number. There are, however, a variety of strategies that can assist you in safely remembering your PIN for when you need to use it.
Method 1 Creating Associations
1. Look for numbers that have significance to you. If you have the option of creating your own PIN, this is probably the quickest and most common method of retrieving it in most situations. Make use of a set of numbers that have some kind of significance to you and that will be easy for you to recall. Important dates, the numbers of your favourite athletes, an old phone number, and so on can be represented by these numbers.
Use numbers that will be difficult for a criminal to guess, such as your birthday or the last four digits of your phone number, to avoid being targeted by a criminal. Make it a number that you will remember, but that is also obscure enough so that it will not be obvious to a potential criminal.
If you are 18 years old and your favourite grandparent is 90 years old, you could use the year 1890.
2. Make use of surreal imagery. This technique makes use of bizarre or amusing visuals to aid in the recall of your PIN number. Make an effort to discover a connection between certain numbers in your PIN. Individual numbers or groups of numbers can be associated with these associations. Make an association that is particularly absurd or strange, so that it will be easier to recall it in the future, if possible.
For example, if you want to remember the number 0285, imagine a two-year-old whose best friend is the age of 85.
3. Create a mnemonic device. Create a mnemonic device for your PIN by using the first letter of each of the numbers in your PIN to help you remember it. Mnemonics are extremely effective tools for remembering a wide range of information types. Simply take the first letter and look for a word that begins with that letter in order to create a mnemonic that will stick in your head for a long time.
For example, the number 2275 is composed of the letters “two, two, seven, five.” Take the first letter of each number, which is TTSF, and form a sentence, such as Two Toads Smell Funky, using the letters from the numbers.
If you prefer, you can use the first syllable of each number to construct your mnemonic system. This may assist you in creating a more solid mental association.
4. Make up a storey about yourself. This method is similar to the bizarre imagery method, but it can be more detailed as well. You should come up with a backstory for your number that either completely or partially explains what it is about. Is your phone number a secret code name for a secret agent, or is it the birthdates of two star-crossed lovers who met on the streets? Create a visually appealing backdrop for your number.
For example, if your PIN number is 2333, imagine Michael Jordan going one-on-one with his teammate Scotty Pippen in a basketball game. When they were teammates on the Chicago Bulls, their jersey numbers were 23 and 33, respectively.
5. Connect the numbers to people you are familiar with. Establishing a connection between your PIN and significant others in your life is a simple way to ensure that you remember your number. Look for phone numbers that are associated with the people who matter to you.
Suppose your grandmother was born in 1922 and your mother was born in 1975; your number will be 2275 as a result of this.
6. Repetition and mapping should be practised. It is important to practise the movements you make when entering your PIN in order to improve your muscle memory. After enough repetition, your brain will remember the movements you make when you enter the number into the computer. After a sufficient amount of practise, you should be able to enter your number without even noticing that you are doing so. When it comes to the right numbers, your body will guide you.
Because it is unlikely that you will want to spend hours practising your movements at your local ATM, this method is likely to be the least practical option available to you.
Method 2 Disguising Your PIN
1. Make a word out of your PIN number (if you have one). When dialling a telephone or using an ATM keypad, each number is represented by three letters on the keyboard. Determine the letters and numbers that make up your PIN on a phone or ATM keypad. This word may be more easily remembered than a series of meaningless numbers, which may make it easier for you to recall this information.
Consider the PIN 3474, which consists of the word “FISH.”
You can use a website such as Phone Spell to figure out which letters correspond to the numbers in your phone book.
Alternatively, if you have the option of creating a PIN, you can use a word that is meaningful to you and convert it into a numerical value.
2. You can make a sentence out of your PIN number. To create individual words, first determine the letters associated with your PIN numbers using a keypad or Phone Spell, and then combine those letters to form words. You should have no trouble creating a sentence that you can remember and that will aid you in remembering your PIN because each number has three letter options for each digit. These words can be anything as long as they aid you in recalling your phone number when you need it.
For example, the number 2275 can stand for CASL, which stands for Cats Always Sleep Long.
3. Encrypt the PIN you’re using. Generally speaking, you should avoid writing down your PIN. But if you are unable to recall your phone number, you can try encrypting it with false numbers to disguise your identity. Make an attempt to intersperse numbers that are not part of your PIN when writing it down. If your information is stolen, it will be more difficult for others to use your phone number as a result of this.
Try putting zeros in between each number to see if it works. For example, the number 1234 becomes the number 10203040.
You can also use the number that is immediately preceding it. For example, the number 5678 becomes the number 56677889.
4. Hide your PIN with the help of mathematics. If you have to write down your PIN, you can use Modular Arithmetic to disguise it, which is a more advanced method of concealment. Numbers are wrapped around in this method, and it works in a similar way to how we calculate the time on a clock. Your pin should have a module of 10, which means that 10 is actually equal to zero in terms of value. You can use this system to create a new number by adding or subtracting a specific number from each of the numbers in your PIN and writing it down. It is very simple. All that is required to remember in this system is the number that has been chosen to be added or subtracted from the equation.
In the above example, if you choose to add 5 to each of the numbers 2275, your encrypted pin would be 7720. 2+5= 7; 2+5=7; 7+5=12-10=2; 5+5=10-10=0
5. Make a few minor adjustments. You should make small changes to your PIN that only you will be aware of when you write it down. Try changing only one digit at a time. For an identity thief, this will be sufficient to render the item useless.
Consider the following example: if your PIN number is 4569, write it down as 4579.
Method 3 Ensuring a Secure PIN
1. Inquire with the bank about creating a number for you. If you are unsure of what PIN to use, you can request that the bank generate one for you. Thus, the number will be completely random and less likely to be stolen as a result of this procedure. This, however, will make it more difficult to remember the PIN number.
Most banks will work with you to develop a PIN that is both safe and secure.
2. Make an effort to use random numbers. The most straightforward method of creating a secure PIN is to use random numbers. This PIN is the most difficult to remember, but it will be more difficult for an identity thief to steal it because of the difficulty in remembering. If you’re having trouble coming up with a random number, try rolling a pair of dice and using the numbers that appear.
Avoid using numbers such as the last four digits of your social security number or your birthday as a password substitute.
Do not use numbers that are sequential, such as 1234 or 5678. These are some of the most frequently encountered and, as a result, are likely to be the first combinations that a thief attempts to use.
It is not recommended to use the same number for multiple PINs.
3. Try not to write down your phone number. The fact that you have written down your PIN ensures that you always have access to it, but it also increases the possibility that it will be stolen. Especially dangerous is the situation if you are carrying your PIN in your purse or wallet along with your credit card. If your possessions are stolen, a thief will have access to all of your personal information.
The only way to ensure that a PIN is securely retained is to memorise it.
Use encryption, math, or some other technique to disguise your PIN if you have to write it down for some reason.
4. When dealing with sensitive PINs and passwords, use a password manager. Services such as LastPass and 1Password store and remember your passwords and PINs for you, which are then hidden behind a master password that only you know. LastPass and 1Password are examples of such services. Using your primary password, these services will autofill forms and protect the information you provide. As long as you don’t lose access to your main account password, your information will be kept safe from prying eyes.
Many of these services are free, and some of them provide additional security through paid upgrades.
Because your primary password is the master key to all of your other information, you should avoid writing it down or storing it in a document that could be stolen.
If you are concerned about forgetting your PIN while you are out and about, these services provide mobile apps that allow you to access your information. These, on the other hand, are typically high-end services.
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