The worst passwords of 2018 have been announced. And while some of them are worryingly simple, some are surprisingly complex.
The full list looks like this:
Testing password security
Using this test to simulate a brute force attack, all of these passwords could be hacked in less than 5 minutes. Some took the software less than a second to break. This is somewhat surprising given that some like ‘!@#$%^&*’ use what some might assume were quite obscure symbols. However this indicates the sophistication of hacking technology.
Add to this the amount of passwords lost through data breaches and users need to think hard about to secure their computers and systems are.
Steps to improve password security has made the news this year. This included reports from the Western Australian Government taking action after it discovered one in five of its 234,000 staff were using weak passwords. This included over 1,400 members of staff all using ‘Password123’ as their password to get into its government systems.
And password security is such an important issue that California has even legislated against the use of weak passwords for manufacturers of internet-connected devices.
If you are looking to create a new password our advice is:
- Use lines from a favourite film or book
- Use words from foreign languages, or even the phonetic spelling of such words
- For highly secure systems use ALT key special characters – not # or @, but Æ or Ø (find ALT key commands here)
To discuss other IT security solutions, such as two-factor authentication, please get in touch: