Time to Review your Passwords

Posted by Theresa Hietpas

Jan 21, 2015 9:18:00 AM

Top 15 Worst Passwords for 2014. Did yours make the list? 

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With the increase in cyber crimes and data theft, the need for secure passwords is more prevalent.

Yet each year, people continue to use the same, basic passwords that make it easier for someone to decipher. 

 

SplashData, a leading provider of security applications and services, has released its annual list of the worst passwords based on files containing over 3.3 million passwords leaked in 2014.

Here are the top 15 worst passwords:        

1. 123456
2. password
3. 12345
4. 12345678
5. qwerty
6. 123456789
7. 1234
8. baseball
9. dragon
10. football
11. 1234567
12. monkey
13. letmein
14. abc123
15. 111111

So did your password make the list? If so, it's time to change it! 

Security expert Bruce Schneier suggests, "Come up with an entire phrase that’s easy for you to remember, and then use the first instance of each letter, number and symbol from each word in the phrase, keeping punctuation intact as well."

We recommend to our clients to use a sentence for a password, including spaces. By using an entire sentence with punctuation, the length makes it harder to crack. A sentence would be much harder for someone to guess, as well.   

Brute force attacks will run through a cycle of possible passwords, getting longer and longer as it runs.  Each additional character in a password makes a brute force crack attempt take roughly 50 additional attempts (one for each possible character) to find the password.

A 9 character password could take in the area of 21,000,000,000,000 attempts to crack using a brute force attack. A ten character could take 50 times that number for attempts. So the longer the password, the better!



Changing your password is an easy way to help prevent data thieves from accessing your data. If you are using the same password multiple times across the internet, you run the risk of exposing your password if one of the services is compromised. Using a free password manager, such as KeePass, is also a great option for storing and changing all your different passwords.

Contact us or send us an email if you have additional questions!



 

Topics: Password protection, Security

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