So many people do it. You come up with one password and use it over and over again across the web. It’s easy to remember and what’s the big deal? Hackers know people do this and if they steal information from one website, which lists e-mails and passwords they may try them again on another site they’d like to access. Instead of always going with an easy to remember password, it’s a good idea to just plan on writing down your passwords and keep them handy that way so you don’t have to worry about not remembering them. (Although the people behind that password challenged article below wouldn’t recommend it, frankly I think it depends on who would have access to your house.) Or if you can’t write them down, try to make them easy for you to remember & hard for anyone to hack (see stronger passwords article below). While it may not be that big a deal if a site where you use a discussion board of something gets hacked and no important personal information is stolen, if you use the same passwords for different important websites you’ve just handed hackers the keys for accessing your other accounts. So watch what password you use where.
Also, you might just want to up your game on the passwords you do use. Each year data is collected of already compromised data to look for the most commonly used passwords. If you use any of the passwords on this list, change it now in honor of National Information Literacy Awareness Month.
This article talks about that people are divided into two groups, those that worry about passwords and those who don’t. They are concerned about remembering passwords and are more likely to do things like pick easier to remember passwords and saving them in browsers. This can lead to other cybersecurity issues. The article seems to suggest that younger people have less issues with their passwords than older people. But measuring worry and steps taken to prevent loss of passwords doesn’t necessarily mean that those not worried aren’t doing things of more risk just because they don’t worry. Familiarity breeds contempt and you only worry when you realize there might be a problem, not when you don’t. No matter which group you fall into, it never hurts to take some time to access the security of your passwords, when you last changed them, and if you’ve reused them. Change them if you have.
What Do the Other Folks Do?
Here are some lists of common passwords. These are the ones anyone trying a hack will try first, so definitely don’t use them. Especially if one of yours is password – although it slipped to 4th on this list. I personally thought dragon was pretty clever and wished I’d thought of it before I saw it on lists like these. Apparently a lot of other people thought it was clever, too.
To get a UK analysis, including most commonly used categories of passwords, check this next link out.
And a list from 2021 with more information about how they found it, categories of passwords, plus recommendations for password managers which they suggest we use.
NOTE: Some of the text of this post is borrowed from a previous post, but the links are either different of updated.