Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert
Is this you? Are you a hacker’s delight? Are you a lazy lima bean begging to be hacked? Recently, there were 32 million passwords stolen last month from a social media site. Upon observation, researchers determined 1 percent of the 32 million people it studied had used “123456” as a password. The second-most-popular password was “12345.” Others in the top 20 included “qwerty,” “abc123” and “princess.”
In another breach thousands of email addresses and their passwords were phished by identity thieves and posted in an online forum. Researchers parsed the hacked passwords and broke them down into categories based on their level of security. For example some of the passwords were very weak “111111” “123456” “1234567” “12345678” “123456789” made the top list. Many of the stolen passwords were people’s first names which of course could be kids, spouses, etc. Obviously, anyone who uses an insecure password like this is more likely to get hacked due to their laziness and less than sophisticated approach to security. 60% of the passwords contained either all numbers or all lowercase letters.
Beefing up passwords using a password manager is much easier. Combine uppercase and lowercase letters, as well as numbers and characters. Don’t use consecutive letters or numbers, and never use names of pets, family members, or close friends. Instead use the first letters of phrases: Full moons on Saturday bring out whackos @12am!: is FmoSbow@12am! That’s a strong password that no sane person will enter manually. But a password manager makes it possible.
I’ve tried every possible password manager on the planet. There is only one that I have found to be incredibly efficient and secure. Roboform. This thing works great. I have it on 5 PCs and the iPhone and they all sync automatically.