The hackers who broke into Gawker released a list of the most popular passwords used on the site. And it turns out they break the most basic rules of password choosing. Namely, they’re short and obvious.
Now, cyber security is kind of confusing and it’s hard to remember passwords. I regularly have to reset my passwords because I’ve forgotten which of the my three standbys I’ve used on a particular site. And the password-username combination? It can be a killer. But still, since we are the guardians of our families’ online security we should try to think up a few good passwords. Unfortunately, many of the registered users at Gawker didn’t.
What is the most common password? You won’t believe it: 12345.
And the second most common password?Password.
The Wall Street Journal has the complete list of most popular passwords here.
The bottom line is that while privacy online is like a passing dream, and hackers can get into account and compromise our online activity, we should still try try try to make up passwords that aren’t so, you know, transparent.
When we don’t, trouble happens. I know this first hand. When setting a PIN for my bank account, I made the dumbest mistake known to password choosers. I used my birthday. And when my wallet was stolen this summer, it didn’t take long for the thieves to figure it out. Which was great. Really great.
And so, the next time you’re asked to set a password, make it long, and make it a little complicated, and since now you know what is the most common computer password, don’t use it. Online security starts with mom and dad!
To check if your Gawker account was hacked, check out the tool Slate put up. (Link via WSJ).
Do you have a password setting rule? Will you reset your password?