My UniKey password


What are the rules for creating an acceptable UniKey password?

Creating a password that is difficult to guess improves the security of your account. Your new UniKey password must:

  1. contain both upper and lower case letters and at least one number
  2. be exactly eight characters
  3. not contain non-English characters, the space character ( ), the ampersand character (&) or the 'less than' character (<), and
  4. not be based on an English word or contain your UniKey.

For more details about UniKey password requirements, see the University of Sydney Information Security Policy.

How do I come up with a new password?

Creating a new password that is easy to remember can be tricky.

One technique that is often use a word and substitute certain vowels and letters for numbers. For example babyhood becomes babyh00d - where you exchange the letter 'o' with the number '0'). This technique is okay but attackers know about this and include these sorts of substitutions when they attempt to hack into accounts.

A better technique is to choose a phrase and then use the first letters of the phrase, then combine this with some substitutions. For example the phrase "A fool and his money are easily parted" could be changed into Afahmae9. or A#ahmae9.

More examples are provided below to help you think of a unique password based on a phrase that you will remember:

Phrase  Example password 
Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti Do dRmf5ltD
My wife bakes delicious fudge cakes!  Mw6dfcs! 
Each to his own Ea2hiowN  
this is a great password   [t1agPw] 
I am always late for work   {1aAlfw} 

Please do not use any of the examples listed above.

What happens if I have forgotten my password?

If you have forgotten your UniKey password, you can have your password reset over the phone by contacting the ICT Helpdesk on 9351 6000. You will be asked security questions to confirm your identity.

If your account details are not complete or are incorrect then you will not be able to have your password reset over the phone.

Alternatively, you can visit an ICT Access Lab (make sure you bring photo ID) where they will reset your password for you on the spot.

What does 'synchronise my password' mean?

Synchronising your password allows you to ensure that your UniKey password is the same across all different systems and the one password is used if you have multiple UniKey accounts.

You may need to if:

  • you know what your password is but you cannot log into one system when you know your password works for everything else.
  • you have multiple accounts and you know a password for one of your accounts and not the other. Synchronising your password will change the password across all other accounts to the same one as the one that you know.
  • you have just been migrated onto to Exchange system and you need to synchronise your password with that system.


To synchronise your password click here. This page can also be accessed by clicking 'Synchronise my Unikey password' on the menu.

What do I do if I try to synchronise my password and it doesn't work?

If you have a secondary UniKey account and you know the password of that account, try to use your second UniKey and password to synchronise across all of your accounts.

If you have tried to synchronise your password several times and receive the message that the UniKey password you entered is incorrect you will need to be issued with a new UniKey password.

To do this you will need to either contact your Master User, request a new password over the phone by contacting the ICT Helpdesk or speak to a staff member at an ICT Learning Hub (make sure you bring photo ID).