Passwords: 90% Are Vulnerable; Is Yours?

Security Password Postit

(Image: Prisma Bildagentur AG/Alamy)

A recent Yahoo News article states that “Most passwords are “open” to hackers” and that “More than 90% of passwords used by internet users could be vulnerable to hackers, according to research by consultancy firm Deloitte.” They point out that most passwords are weak and easy to break; and that most people re-use their computer and Internet passwords on most of the sites they frequent, thus making it easy for hackers to use their passwords.

This isn’t new information; in fact, this blog has stated the same things many times. What I do like about this article is that it offers a suggestion or two on how to make up a password that you can remember and modify it for use for your other sites. Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Because passwords with mixtures of numbers and letters are hard to remember, people also tend to reuse them – with the average person owning 26 online accounts with just five passwords.
But there are techniques which help normal people to remember passwords for dozens of sites easily – and thus keep their private data safe.
“Strong passwords are a necessity for online safety,” says a spokesman for PC security expert Norton by Symantec.
“Always, use upper and lower case letters, numbers, and a special character such as asterisks in your passwords – don’t use your pets’ name unless you’ve named them 80l7*ck2.”
“A good tip is to pick a single master password that you’ll be able to remember, and then customise [sic] that password for different websites. The first step is to choose a good master password that uses more than six characters and some combination of letters and numbers (rather than real words).
“For example, let’s use the phrase “My dog is called Rex”. Reduce that phrase to each of the first letters, and you’ll end up with “mdicr”.
“To make this even more complex, you could then add the first and last letter of the website to it (Amazon’s website would be: “AmdicrN”). This little trick helps you to remember all those various passwords and yet keep things complex enough that it’s hard for a computer hacker to crack. This sequence makes sense to only you and not anyone else.”
“The biggest mistake anyone can make, however, is using the same password for each account as it makes you more vulnerable should a cyber-attack occur. Therefore not only having multiple passwords is a must in cyberspace, but it’s also important to make them strong and change them regularly.”

I give this article a big “thumbs up” for offering this good advice on the use of computer and Internet passwords. Give some serious thought to implementing them. You’ll be glad you did. Oh, and by the way, don’t use the article’s examples for your passwords. The bad guys read these articles too.

Reference: Yahoo News article

Be very careful…it’s dangerous out there.

Please comment on this article; we all learn from each other when our views and opinions are shared.

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Remember, personal computing is a blast…keep it productive and enjoyable.

Best regards,

Paul

paulsinternetsecurity(at)yahoo.com

@PaulsInternet on Twitter

Images courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and FreeByte.com

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Filed under Cybercrime, Internet Security, passwords, security, Warning

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