For most people who experience a password hacker in real life, they find out too late that using a strong password is important. Like the kid who think he is invincible and jumps off the roof because he doesn’t believe in gravity, having your website, Facebook account, or your system’s server hacked into is a lot like the ground smacking you in the face. Gravity does exist and so do bad people who would love to gain access to your life and wreck havoc.
According to a report, most users still haven’t answered the call by security experts to implement more robust passwords. In fact, in a list of the most easy to hack passwords, simply typing ‘123456’ took a truly forgettable top prize.
Security firm Imperva recently released its list of the passwords most likely to be hacked based on 32 million instances of successful hacking. Imperva named their report “Consumer Password Worst Practices,” and some of the entries near the top are truly simple and could lead to theft or identity fraud.
Top 10 Worst Passwords
The following is a list of the most predictable passwords, and should not be used under any circumstances (Source: pcworld.com):
Hopefully you don’t see your current password on the list, but if you do or don’t, it doesn’t really matter. Most people have a simple enough password that it could be hacked by someone who knows what they are doing. Even if you have a better than average password, you may be like the millions who a. never use it or b. use it for every account they own. After all, who wants to remember all those passwords!
We’ve all received those Phishing emails from people trying to gain access to your various accounts, right? Facebook, MySpace, Banks, and Twitter. Well, if you fall for one of those emails and they figure out one password, they then check to see if you’re using the same password on the other sites too.
If you are using social media, most of your other accounts are visible to everyone so they can connect with you and that makes you vulnerable to getting hacked.
How to Strengthen Your Passwords
Other key findings in the report: it seems that almost 1 in 3 users choose passwords comprised of six or fewer characters; more than half use passwords based on only alpha-numeric characters; and almost 50 per cent used variations on their name, popular slang terms, or simple strings of consecutive characters from the average QWERTY keyboard — such as ‘asdfg’.
Imperva has made several obvious recommendations, suggesting most users adopt passwords with at least eight characters and to mix those characters between upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols. Passwords should be simple enough that they won’t be too easily forgotten, but the idea is to make cracking the code virtually impossible for either an unknown or known hacker.
About this article: Dennis Faas is the CEO and Chief editor of Infopackets.com: a daily, digital publication dedicated to MS Windows, computing, technology trends and solutions to real life computing issues: all written in simple English. Subscription to Infopackets Windows Newsletter is free. Visit us today! http://www.infopackets.com
So, how do you create a password that is easy to remember, unique for each account, and extremely difficult to hack? I want to give you the answer! Leave a comment on this post and let me know what you think. I’ll post the answer to the question soon.
Kirk is owner of Interactive Business Solutions, a Business and Marketing Development Consulting company in Northwestern Wisconsin. He works with small and medium size businesses to to implement technology solutions that help a business become more productive and profitable. Interactive123.com