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Manufacturing Indaba 2018

Worst password is now '123456'

The only positive point to be drawn from 2013's list of the world's worst and easiest to hack passwords is that "password" is no longer in the number-one spot - it's at number two and 123456 is now in the top spot
The World's Worst password is now 123456 according to SplashData. Image: Salvatore Vuono Free Digital Photos
The list, compiled by SplashData and drawn from passwords posted online following major web service hacks, such as the major breach at Adobe - the company behind Photoshop - highlights the risks consumers are taking by choosing easy to remember rather than secure passwords.

Consumers may well be suffering from password fatigue - the inability to continue to create and remember more and more unique log-ins as the number of web services they use proliferate - but that is still no excuse for using "qwerty" (the fourth most common password) or "abc123" (number five) for protecting their most personal digital information.

Still, web users are not entirely to blame. Many companies are not doing enough to force their users into using stronger passwords that feature a mix of characters, numbers and symbols. If sites were enforcing stricter password rules then it would not be possible to set guessable passwords like "000000" (number 25) as log-ins.

Every time a site is hacked and the passwords exposed, those log-ins are added to existing password-cracking tools to make hacking the next site even easier.

One way of achieving safer and more complex passwords is by using a "pass phrase" and security firm Sophos has made an excellent video here explaining how to do it.

Other steps users can take include activating two-factor authentication if a site supports it and to ensure that if you must re-use a password never choose the one for your e-mail account or online banking services.

The 10 most common passwords are "123456", "password", "12345678", "qwerty", "abc123", "123456789", "111111", "1234567", "iloveyou" and "adobe123". Also popular are "letmein" (14th spot) and "trustno1" (24th).

Source: AFP via I-Net Bridge


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