Easiest Security Tip of the Year: Do Not Use Password as a Password!

by Florence Klein

This is the time of year when many aspects of the past year get looked over. We are in the “Year in Review” phase for 2011. It is a good time to see where we have been and look ahead to where we want to go. Beefing up our cyber security is one good area to start with and for many a simple boost is available: Get yourself better passwords.

A number of websites are publishing the worst passwords used for year 2011. What makes them the worst? One, they are common. Two, they are easy to hack.

According to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) report for 2011 the lack of secure passwords being may be a factor in data breaches — past, present, and future. If a scam artist gets at some of your personal account information and can guess a simple password, your account is theirs.

One reason for poor passwords and the resulting lack of security stems from the ever-growing number of passwords we are required to have. We now need to remember passwords to access email, bank accounts, online shopping carts and more. Some of us need access to databases, applications, multiple home and or work networks, etc. on a daily basis.

Creating strong passwords and remembering them may seem like a chore but it is nothing compared to recovering your identity or assets. There is help as well. Random password generators are available online or as memory stick portable apps. These tools create high security passwords and recall them for you. You will need a master password to gain access your password database but they will all be safe if you crate a strong master password.

Now to the list of the 2011 top 25 most common, most stolen passwords. The ones you do not want to use

  1. password
  2. 123456
  3. 12345678
  4. qwerty
  5. abc123
  6. monkey
  7. 1234567
  8. letmein
  9. trustno1
  10. dragon
  11. baseball
  12. 111111
  13. iloveyou
  14. master
  15. sunshine
  16. ashley
  17. bailey
  18. passw0rd
  19. shadow
  20. 123123
  21. 654321
  22. superman
  23. qazwsx
  24. michael
  25. football

Stay safe, change your password,

Florence Klein