As an IT Support company security plays a big part in what we do and one of the simplest ways to put your security at risk is an insecure password. SplashData compiled data from over 2 million leaked passwords made publicly available and have come up with their annual “Worst Passwords List” this is to highlight the insecure passwords a lot of people are still using and which are incredibly easy to both guess and crack, thereby putting them at risk for hacking and identity theft.
One of our clients came to us last week after they noticed their email Inbox was filling up with hundreds of mail delivery failure notices and they could no longer send any email. Investigation showed that their email account had been hacked and had been used to send out over 10,000 junk emails. Understandably, the mail provider blocked the account.
It was hacked because they had used a very weak password comprising their company name plus the number 1, ie ndata1.
Before we talk about how best to secure your passwords have a look through the 25 worst passwords below and see if you are guilty of using one of these.
Password security is relatively simple to implement, below are some basic pointers for securing your data/identity.
- Maintain an 8-character minimum length requirement, and longer is not necessarily better for instance qwertyuiop is 10 characters but it is simply the top line of your keyboard and easily cracked.
- Don’t use a single word (e.g. “football”) or a commonly-used phrase (e.g.“letmein”).
- Do not use normal words, parts of your name, the company name, your pet, or any other normal English word. A completely random mix forms the best passwords.
- Try adding at least 1 uppercase, 1 lowercase and 1 non-alphanumeric such as %, &, @ into your password, to ensure it is as safe as possible.
- Don’t use a password that is the same or similar to one you use on any other website. A cybercriminal who can break into that website can steal your password from it and use it to get into other accounts.
- Use some form of 2 step verification wherever it is available.
- Keep your operating system, browser, and other software up to date.
- Be careful of suspicious emails and websites.
- Install an antivirus program on your computer.
Implementing the above will allow you to resist common attacks and contain any successful attacks. We hope you have found this useful.
A strong secure password would look like anyone of the following;
If you would like know more about how we can secure your data give us a call on 01983 214300 or drop us an email firstname.lastname@example.org we would love to hear from you.