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Special characters in HMRC agent passwords

Should certain special characters be avoided in HMRC agent passwords?

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My understanding of the current password rules are:

1) Min 10 max 128 characters

2) Contain any UTF-8 character. I believe this includes all special characters but am happy to be corrected on this point.

Has anyone experienced any problems when the agent password includes any particular special characters?

Replies (8)

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By memyself-eye
04th May 2021 12:14

only HMRC issues passwords/receipts/ acknowlegements which are anything like 128 characters long!

I base mine on little known characters from history

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By Hugo Fair
04th May 2021 13:29

Those were the 'rules' when HMRC introduced the need for 'new, stronger passwords' last April ... but you omitted one other 'rule':
* their passwords are now case sensitive.

FWIW, UTF-8 characters cover just about any 'special character' you are likely to encounter ... although this is not an absolute guarantee.

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Replying to Hugo Fair:
By SteveHa
04th May 2021 15:06

Hugo Fair wrote:

FWIW, UTF-8 characters cover just about any 'special character' you are likely to encounter ... although this is not an absolute guarantee.

Hmph! HMRC won't even allow an ampersand in a business name (I wonder how Marks & Spencer get on).

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By Hugo Fair
04th May 2021 15:40

Ampersand (or to be precise &) has a direct UTF-8 'entity number' (& # 38; without the gaps) ... so should be OK to use in the context of OP's question.
What you've mentioned is one of the (oh so unusual) scenarios where HMRC have chosen to use inconsistent 'rules' across their different systems!

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Replying to Hugo Fair:
By SteveHa
04th May 2021 15:50

I know - I wasn't criticising your analysis, but rather when it comes to HMRC, making logical assumptions is likely to end badly.

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A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
04th May 2021 18:06

If it didn't like a special character, it wouldn't let you set up a password with one in, would it? It used to be the case that it didn't care about upper and lower case, an A was an a, or was it the other way round?

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By Duggimon
05th May 2021 10:36

There's nothing you can type on a standard keyboard without using the Alt key that doesn't appear in the UTF-8 set.

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Replying to Duggimon:
By Duggimon
05th May 2021 10:39

Incidentally, that sentence above makes a better password than any weird word with characters stuck in.

https://xkcd.com/936/

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