Names Do Not Make Good Passwords
|21 January 2010|
If you use Facebook or MySpace, it’s time to change your password. RockYou, a company that creates applications for social networking sites, was hacked last month. Over 32 million passwords were stolen and made public.
Those 32 million passwords have since been analyzed, and a list of the top 100 has been compiled. Nearly a third of this list is made up of common given names. (I didn’t count character names like Barbie, Mickey and Naruto, but these made the list as well.) The most popular password-name was Nicole (11th overall), followed Daniel, Jessica, Michael and Ashley. Here are all 32:
What can we learn from this? That names make bad passwords. If you’re currently using a name as a password, or as part of a password, you should change that entire password immediately.
What should you change it to? Something very long that includes uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numbers, and (if possible) other characters. And don’t forget to mix everything together–9a!sIU2gf0!O!0dPY1 is a stronger password than POIUYasdfg90210!!!.