We all make mistakes.
Sometimes those mistakes involve forgetting our passwords.
For those of us with a Mac, should we be forgetful one day, Apple has given us an out. Fortunately, resetting our password is simple.
Follow the instructions below to prevent your computer from becoming an oversized paperweight.
- Restart your computer and immediately hold the Command and R buttons simultaneously.
- When the Apple logo appears, you can release these buttons. Be patient while the device takes a minute to load in Recovery Mode.
- A menu bar will pop up. Click Utilities.
- Select Terminal, type resetpassword and press Enter.
- Close the Terminal Window to reveal Reset Password Utility.
- Choose the account you’d like to reset, enter your new password and click Save.
- Restart the computer and log back in. You’re all done!
Am I Vulnerable?
Now you might be thinking, can’t some criminal just use this method to take over my computer and reset my password?
Fear not, as there are two ways to prevent this.
The first path to protect yourself is to use encryption software to protect your data from unauthorized use. Don’t worry, this is easier than it sounds.
For most modern Mac users, you simply go to System Preferences, then Security & Privacy, followed by choosing FileVault. Click on the image of a lock and enter your security information. Turn on FileVault and you are all set.
The FileVault method blocks cyber criminals from accessing your data.
In the case of someone stealing your computer, you may also want to install a Firmware Password. Although this does not mean you’ll necessarily get your computer back (turn on the Find My Mac option), it will prevent any of your private data from being retrieved.
Just as before, you will want to reboot the computer and hold Command and R until the logo appears. Choose Utilities from the menu and click Firmware Password Utility. Pick Turn On Firmware Password, enter the password, and click on Set Password. Quit Firmware Password Utility and Restart the computer.
If you choose to activate a Firmware Password, make sure you can remember it (maybe right it down) because this will make resetting your security codes extremely difficult. You’d have to go to the Apple store if you need to reset a second time.