The following advice will help you choose a strong password for your UQ user account. If you need to, you can always change your password.

What are the recommendations for a good password?

When you choose a password, some general advice to remember is:



Use at least eight characters, including:

  • at least one letter (a-z, A-Z)
  • at least one non-letter character (e.g. numbers or an approved special character.)

Approved special characters are:

 #  $  %  '  (       )  *  +  ,  -  /  :  ;  <  =  >  [  ]  ^  _  `  {  |  }  ~

Remember to change your password at least once every 12 months.

  • Use & ? ! " @ \ or a space
  • Use anything too similar to your current password
  • Use anything similar to a single dictionary word or common term or phrase
  • Use your name, phone number, date of birth, or other ID information previously supplied to UQ
  • Use the same password you have used before
  • Use the same password on any other system.

Suggestions for a strong password

  • Use five unrelated words with some non-alphabetic characters or deliberate misspelling. Try to create a phrase that is easy to remember, but long enough that it is difficult to guess or crack. Alternately you could use the first letter from each word of a phrase to form an easily remembered non-word.
  • Include approved special characters. But don't replace the letter O with the number 0 and the letter i with 1, or other obvious combinations. 
  • Avoid using any date as your password.
  • Mix upper and lower case. But avoid capitalising only the first or last letter (e.g. Mich37bo is not as secure as mICh37Bo).
  • Avoid using personal information. This includes your maiden name, car registration number, address, or family member’s name. 
  • Avoid duplicating characters (aaabbbccc) or keyboard patterns (qwertyuiop). These can easily be seen by someone watching you type.

Keeping your password secure

  • Never leave an account logged in and walk away.
  • Never write down your password near your computer. It's preferable not to write your password down at all.
  • Never give your password to anyone.
  • Never select "remember password" in a web browser. 

How can I clear passwords from my web browser?

For security reasons, we don't recommend saving passwords in web browsers.

The steps to remove a saved password will be different, depending on the web browser you are using.

Please consult the browser's website, AskUs in the UQ Library (students), or the ITS Service Desk (staff) if you need more help.

  • Firefox on Windows: Settings > Options > Security > Saved Logins
  • Firefox on Apple: Select the Apple menu > Preferences > Security (older versions of Firefox will list this as Privacy) > Saved Passwords > View Saved Passwords
  • Google Chrome on Windows: Hold down Control + Shift + Delete
  • Google Chrome on Apple: Hold down Command + Shift + Delete.
  • Internet Explorer: Tools > Internet Options  > Content > Autocomplete > Settings > Delete autocomplete history
  • Microsoft Edge: More Actions (three horizontal dots top right of screen) > Settings > View advanced settings > Privacy and services > Manage my saved passwords
  • Safari: Select the Safari menu > Preferences > Autofill > Usernames and Passwords > Edit. For Apple devices you can also use the Keychain utility to clear passwords.

How can I update passwords on my smartphone?

After changing your password, your phone should automatically ask for your new password when you try to check your mail or access wifi. 

  • For iPhone or iPad: if you are not automatically prompted to enter the new password, then reenter your username and password (email instructionswifi instructions).
  • For other devices: if you are not automatically prompted to enter the new password, go to your phone's settings. Contact local IT support or the ITS Service Desk for help. 

I changed my password and now Outlook doesn't work

After you enter your new password, you may need to log off your computer and log back on again.

You may also find that Outlook is continuing to use your old password because it is stored in your device's cache.

The pocess for clearing this cache will depend on the device you are using:

  • For Windows 10: do a Google search for "outlook credential manager".
  • For Apple: go to 'Applications' > 'Utilities' > 'Keychain Access'. Select 'Passwords', then remove your email password. 


I changed my password and now wifi doesn't work

This is usually caused by Eduroam continuing to use your old password. Remove old Eduroam settings so you can enter the new password. 


What if someone asks for my password?

You should never give your password to anyone else.

You may be held accountable for any actions carried out by someone who has your password. 

What if I think my account is compromised?

Phone the ITS Service Desk (3365 6000) if:

  • your password appears to have been changed by someone else
  • new files appear
  • any of your files disappear
  • your last login time is not what you expect. 

How can I change my password?

To change your password visit the change password page

Why am I now unable to print from my Mac?

To continue using your printer you will need to forget it in Keychain.

  • Go to 'Applications' > 'Utilities' > 'Keychain Access'.
  • Under 'Category' select 'Passwords'. This will show all your saved passwords.
  • Find the name of your printer and right click to delete the password. 

Once deleted you will need to send a document to print. If the status shows up as 'On Hold (Authentication Required)', click 'Resume' and you will be prompted to enter your UQ username and new UQ password.

You will need to enter your username in the following format: uq\uqusername

I need to set a security question

Security question settings

If you ever have to contact the ITS Service Desk about your account you will be required to verify your identity via your security question and answer. A well thought out question can greatly enhance your online security. Simply follow the steps below to change your question and answer. You can set your security question and answer during the activation process (for students and visitors), by calling the service desk on 336 56000 or at the UQ security question set up page.

Choosing your security question and answer

Use the points below as a guide to choose a good security question and answer.

  • Choose a question only you know the answer to - make sure the question isn't associated with your password.
  • Pick a question that can't be answered through research (for example, avoid your mother's maiden name, your birth date, your first or last name, your social security number, your phone number, your pet's name, etc.).
  • Make sure your answer is memorable, but not easy to guess. Use an answer that is a complete sentence for even more security.

Carefully consider your security question and answer as this information will be required if you ever forget your password. We recommend choosing a question that is easy for you to answer but is difficult for others to guess.

How do I manage all my passwords?

Using a password manager is a great way to keep track of all your passwords. They allow you to set complex passwords for your various accounts and can even log into them for you. A good password manager stores your details in a secure file which can only be accessed when you enter your master password or passphrase.

UQ does not currently provision a password manager product for all staff, although this is being considered. There are several products on the market for a reasonable cost, some of the more popular ones are:

  • LastPass
  • 1Password
  • Keeper Security
  • Enpass