By Rita Deutschbein, Madlen Schäfer and Isa Kabakci | October 14, 2023, 2:43 p.m
Password security is very important to protect trusted information and data. However, experts warn that hackers can crack unsafe or bad passwords in under a second. TECHBOOK reveals what these are and how you can best protect yourself.
The Internet has made our lives easier in many ways, but also significantly less secure. Because with a little knowledge and talent, hackers can easily get access to sensitive data that we would rather keep locked up. That’s why we protect ourselves on the Internet as best we can with passwords that are intended to prevent strangers from accessing accounts and data. It can therefore happen that you choose a simple password out of convenience and then, in the worst case, use it everywhere.
Experts have revealed some of the most frequently used and insecure passwords as part of research. The frightening result: Less than a second would be enough for fraudsters to crack many of them.
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These are the most insecure passwords
Many people want to make it easy for themselves and choose an easy password so that they don’t forget it so quickly. In addition, laziness usually wins and people use the insecure password for almost all logins and accounts. This can actually backfire. Hackers are now able to crack passwords in under a second.
The password manager Nordpass has carried out an investigation and found out the most common and therefore also the most insecure passwords. They analyzed large databases in collaboration with experts specializing in cybersecurity incidents. The last evaluation was for 2022. The worldwide You can see the most frequently used, and therefore worst, passwords below:
For Deutschland there is also an evaluation. Even if you have a harder time remembering difficult passwords, you should definitely not use one of these ten passwords in this country, because hackers don’t even need a second to crack them:
123456 password 12345678 12345 hello password fuck 12345678 master 1234
Users should also avoid certain information such as their name, that of their partner or pet – the information helps fraudsters crack a password more quickly. Also taboo is the name of the street you grew up on, your favorite vacation spot or the sports team you are a fan of. Fraudsters could find out all this information through information on social networks such as Facebook.
Also read: How Google wants to replace passwords with its “passkeys”.
This is what a secure password looks like
An ideal password should always be long and quite complex. The Hasso Plattner Institute, an IT organization with a focus on cybersecurity, among other things, recommends the following points when it comes to password protection:
Long passwords, ideally more than 15 characters, always use different passwords, use password managers, change passwords regularly, activate two-factor authentication if possible
The Federal Ministry for Information Security also gives some tips on what a secure password should look like. Among other things, the password should have at least eight characters. The ministry recommends at least 20 characters for encryption methods for WLAN (WPA2 or WPA3). You should use all available characters for the password. These include numbers, letters (both large and small) and various special characters.
Password managers are helpful
If you can’t and don’t want to remember countless passwords, you can also try a password manager. We have put together recommended programs for you here. Otherwise, it is always advisable to provide accounts with double protection, for example through two-factor authentication. Many providers or service providers already offer this.
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