SecuritySecurity Management

Shock Horror – We Are All STILL REALLY BAD At Passwords

Michael Moore joined TechWeek Europe in January 2014 as a trainee before graduating to Reporter later that year. He covers a wide range of topics, including but not limited to mobile devices, wearable tech, the Internet of Things, and financial technology.

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‘123456’ and ‘password’ top SplashData list of the world’s worst passwords

It turns out we really are rubbish at changing our passwords – with perennial culprits cropping up again and again on the most recent list of the world’s worst passwords.

Security firm SplashData has analysed more than 3.3 million passwords across the world to compile its round up of the world’s most common passwords, with a few usual suspects dominating the list.

‘123456’ tops the list, closely followed by ‘password’, as they have done every year since the survey began in 2011, with ‘12345’, ‘12345678’ and ‘qwerty’ making up the top five.

password obviousCome on people

In order to minimise the risk of being hacked, SplashData is advising people to follow a few simple steps, including not using the same password for multiple websites or accounts. Using favourite sports, teams, first names or your birth year as part of or the whole of the password is also a big no-no.

The ideal password should be eight characters or more with mixed types of characters, the company says.

“Passwords based on simple patterns on your keyboard remain popular despite how weak they are,” said Morgan Slain, CEO of SplashData. “Any password using numbers alone should be avoided, especially sequences. As more websites require stronger passwords or combinations of letters and numbers, longer keyboard patterns are becoming common passwords, and they are still not secure.”

“The bad news from my research is that this year’s most commonly used passwords are pretty consistent with prior years,” Burnett said. “The good news is that it appears that more people are moving away from using these passwords. In 2014, the top 25 passwords represented about 2.2 percent of passwords exposed. While still frightening, that’s the lowest percentage of people using the most common passwords I have seen in recent studies.”

SplashData’s ‘Worst Passwords Of 2014’ were:

Rank Password Change from 2013
1 123456 No Change
2 password No Change
3 12345 Up 17
4 12345678 Down 1
5 qwerty Down 1
6 123456789 No Change
7 1234 Up 9
8 baseball New
9 dragon New
10 football New
11 1234567 Down 4
12 monkey Up 5
13 letmein Up 1
14 abc123 Down 9
15 111111 Down 8
16 mustang New
17 access New
18 shadow Unchanged
19 master New
20 michael New
21 superman New
22 696969 New
23 123123 Down 12
24 batman New
25 trustno1 Down 1

 

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