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Google Study Reveals Worst Password Choices

By September 29, 2013March 6th, 2023Technology News

1384066_chocolate_1Even passwords we think are secure aren’t, a new Google study shows. In fact, passwords that may seem hard to guess to us may be the first passwords a hacker tries when trying to enter your account. Google’s new study of over 2,000 people aimed to figure out what passwords were being used, and the habits people had when it came to choosing passwords. While this guarantees most passwords will be different, the idea behind them when they are created is the same. Here are the most common password habits:

1. Pet names

2. A notable date, such as a wedding anniversary

3. A family member’s birthday

4. Your child’s name

5. Another family member’s name

6. Your birthplace

7. A favorite holiday

8. Something related to your favorite sports team

9. The name of a significant other

10. The word “Password”

As you can see, the only actual password on the list is the word “Password.” However, the rest, while they may be unique to you, are easy to guess when someone wants to enter your account. It’s likely your child’s name is somewhere on your Facebook, and you probably often support your favorite sports team on your Twitter. Finding out where you were born is as easy as an search, as is finding a wedding anniversary or family names.

While it may not be practical to try and guess all of these passwords when a hacker is trying to enter several accounts if they are trying to steal your identity, then using a more personal approach is only logical. The study revealed a few other interesting facts, including that nearly half of us share our passwords with others. In addition, 3% of survey takers write their passwords down on a sticky note and post it close to the computer they work. If you wouldn’t leave your door unlocked at night, then you shouldn’t write your password on a sticky note.

Strong passwords will have a combination of letters and numbers, and they shouldn’t be straight dates or names. Mixing up letters and numbers so they resemble something you can remember easily is safer. Having a password that has no relation to you or the people around you is safest. Remember, a safe password is the first key to Internet security, and you should encourage your employees, as well as friends and family, to avoid passwords that involve the things and people closest to them.

Jason Manteiga

Jason J. Manteiga, Vice President of Olmec Systems, has been part of the company for over the past 20 years. He believes that having a great work environment and supportive team, is the ultimate key to success. Since being in the IT realm for over 25 years, Jason, along with Olmec Systems, has been on the Inc. 5000 “List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies” and Channel Futures MSP 501 “Top Managed Service Providers in North America,” along with other awards and nominations. Jason earned his Bachelor Degree in Information Systems from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He also holds certifications in Microsoft MCSE, VMWare VCP, and Cisco CCNA. In his spare time, Jason is a contributor for The Center for Social & Legal Research (Privacy Exchange) and a member of the Morris County Chamber of Commerce. His hobbies include cycling and kayaking. He currently lives in New Jersey with his wife, two daughters and son.