Choosing and Changing a Secure UMICH (Level-1) Password

Quick Link: Change my UMICH password now.

Forgot your UMICH password? See Resetting a Forgotten UMICH (Level-1) Password for how to reset it.

Contents

Why You Need a Secure Password

Choosing a strong, secure password reduces the risk that your password will be guessed or stolen by a password thief. A password thief can use your password to access your email and send email in your name, change your personal information in Wolverine Access and the MCommunity Directory, or publish inappropriate or illegal material. A thief may also be able to use your password to break into U-M systems.

A strong, secure UMICH password is good for you and the U!

Guidelines for Creating a Secure Password

When you change your password using UMICH Account Management: Change Password, your new password will be checked for strength.

Your new password must:

  • Use nine or more characters.
  • Have at least three of these:
    • Lowercase letters
    • Uppercase letters
    • Numerals
    • Punctuation

And must not:

  • Be a word or simple phrase—or contain four numbers in ascending or descending order (for example, 12345 or 8765).
  • Use parts of your name.

Use the first letters of the words in a phrase to make a strong and memorable password. For example, "Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth" becomes 4S&7yaofb4th.

Select a unique password for U-M use. Do not use your UMICH password outside the university for other computing accounts. The university uses strong encryption methods to protect your password. If you use that same password for services that do not offer such protection, you put your UMICH password and account at risk.

Michigan Medicine: When you change your UMICH (Level-1) password, it will be checked to ensure that it is different from your Michigan Medicine (Level-2) password.

How to Change Your UMICH Password

  1. Go to UMICH Account Management: Change Password and log in.

  2. In the New Password box, type your new password. The strength of your new password will be checked as you type. As you meet each password strength requirement, it will be checked off in the box at right. For example, as you enter more characters and meet more requirements, you'll be notified that your password is strong.

    Screenshot showing to type the new password in the new password box, and the word strong will appear below it after you have typed a strong password. The requirements for a strong password are listed in the boxes to the right. You can click the show passwords button to display your passwords as you type them

  3. In the Confirm Password box, retype your password. The word Match will appear next to it when you have correctly confirmed it. Then click the Change Password button.
    Wait for "Match" to appear. If you copy and paste your password into the Confirm Password box, it may not show Match immediately. You must type something in the Confirm Password box before a match will be registered. You will not be able to change your password until the word Match displays.

    Screenshot showing the word Match that appears when your retyped password matches the new password you entered. The change password button then becomes clickable.

  4. Next, you will see a page indicating that your password is being changed.

    Screenshot of page that displays indicating that your password is being changed, with a rotating set of arrows to indicate progress.

  5. Finally, a password change confirmation email will be sent to your @umich.edu email address and any other account you have specified in UMICH Account Management.

    Screenshot of the password change confirmation. The words Your password has been changed successfully appear.

  6. If you have not already set security questions, which allow you to reset your password if you forget it, you can do so by clicking Continue.

  7. Close your browser window or tab when you are finished. If you are using a shared or public computer to change your password, close your browser and log out of the system.

Allow a Few Minutes for Your New Password to Take Effect

Your new password must synchronize to several systems. When you change your UMICH password, you are actually changing several passwords at once. Your password change is synchronized to U-M systems and services by the UMICH Password Hub in MCommunity. Please be aware that the synchronization is not instantaneous. It can take several minutes for the process to complete and for your new password to work for some services, such as MWireless. Please wait a few minutes and try logging in again if your new password does not work immediately.

Lock and unlock your U-M Windows laptop. If you use your UMICH password to login to your U-M Windows laptop, it is recommended that you lock and unlock your computer after changing your UMICH password. Wait a minute or two after changing your password, then

  1. Lock the computer by pressing ctrl-alt-delete on your keyboard, then clicking the Lock this computer link.

  2. Unlock the computer by pressing ctrl-alt-delete on your keyboard, then log in with your uniqname and UMICH password as you normally do.

Update Devices Where Your Password Is Saved

If you have stored your password on your phone or other mobile device, be sure to update your device with your new password. For example, if you access your U-M email on your phone, you will need to login to the email application with your new password. You may also need to update your password for MWireless. See Connecting to MWireless for configuration instructions.

Set Security Questions in Case You Forget Your Password

Security questions allow you to reset your password if you forget it. Anyone with a U-M uniqname can reset their own password if they set up these questions and add an external email address. The process is simple and only needs to be set up once.

Set five security questions and answers that are unique to you. Select questions and answers that are easy for you to remember and difficult for others to guess or discover. If you forget your UMICH password in the future, you can answer a random selection of the questions to receive a password reset code at an external email address or phone number. You can then use that code to reset your password.

  1. Go to UMICH Account Management and log in.

    Screen shot showing the UMICH Account Management home page with login link in upper right

  2. Click the Security Questions tab. Select a question from each question drop-down menu and enter your answer.

    Answers must be at least 4 characters long; they can include punctuation or symbols. To reset your password in the future, you must respond to the questions with the exact same answers specified at this time. Capitalization is irrelevant, but spaces are important.

    Screenshot showing the security questions page with instructions to click the drop down arrow to select a question, then type your answer in the box below that question. There are five questions. Click show responses to display your answers as you type them.

    Note: If you forget your answers to the security questions, but remember your password, you can set new questions and answers at any time.

  3. The Save Responses button at the bottom of the page will become clickable after you have selected five questions and provided answers for all of them. When you are satisfied with your responses, click Save Responses.

    Screenshot showing last question and save responses button is now clickable

  4. Check your questions and answers. If you are satisfied with them, click Confirm Responses. If you wish to make changes, click Go Back or Cancel to return to the previous screen.

    Warning! Clicking Go Back or Cancel will erase all your questions and answers, and you will need to start over. It is not possible to change the answer to just one question.

    Screenshot of confirm responses page with confirm responses button circled

  5. If you are not automatically directed to the External Email page, click the External Email tab to get there. Provide an external email address where you wish to receive a password reset code.

    Screenshot of external email tab with boxes to enter your email address and confirm your email address.

  6. In the Enter Email Address field, enter a personal email address that is not your @umich.edu address. Enter the same email address in the Confirm Email Address field, and click Save Responses.

    Want the password reset code sent to your mobile phone? Follow the instructions under Text Message Instructions.

    Screenshot of external email page with external email address entered and re-entered in the boxes and save responses is clickable

  7. You will see confirmation that you have completed setting up your security questions.

Tips for Protecting Your Password

  • Don't tell anyone your password—not even trusted family members and computer support staff.
  • Use a different password for each online account. That way, if one password is compromised, your other accounts are not at risk. It is especially important that you refrain from using your UMICH password for non-university services.
  • If you have the option to set security questions to help you reset your password in case you forget it, do so. See Set Security Questions in Case You Forget Your Password below for how to set these for your UMICH password.
  • Use only secure programs when connecting to the U-M computing environment—programs that protect your password and your data.
  • If the service provides a logout feature, use it every time you exit the service.
  • Turn on two-factor (Duo) for Weblogin. Your password needs a partner.
  • We recommend that you check your UMICH password security every six months and change your password if it is at risk. An easy way to remember this is to check your password when you change your clocks for Daylight Saving Time (DST).
  • If you must write down your password to help you remember it, it is better to write down a clue to jog your memory rather than the actual password. Keep it in a safe, secure place, and do not leave it where others could see it.
  • Learn more about managing passwords at Safe Computing: Manage Your Passwords.
Last Updated: 
Monday, November 6, 2017