Each year, millions of Internet users’ data is stolen. Whether it’s because of hackers or data breaches, it’s important to keep your information safe. Unfortunately, a lot of these issues arise because of poor passwords. What credentials should you avoid using when setting up a website?
Using a random secure password generator can help ensure that you never use some of the hilariously insecure passwords for your critical information.
The following passwords are some of the worst ones you can use, and you should avoid using them at all costs.
The overuse of 12345 dates back many years. Before the Internet, before hackers and before Internet data breaches, 12345 was a popular locker number, bike lock passcode, briefcase passcode and code to the Dromedia air shield in the movie “Spaceballs”.
In the words of Rick Moranis, “That’s the stupidest combination I’ve ever heard in my life.” It still is. It’s surprising how many people actually still use this password for their email, banking profiles and other secure online accounts.
In fact, 12345 is among the top 5 worst and most used passwords in the world. If 12345 is your password, change it immediately.
2. Your Social Security Number
The second worst password is a social security number. Although you may think you’re the only person who knows your social security number, you’re not. Thought it’s not easy to obtain this information, it’s not impossible.
Think about how many times you filled this information out in the past year. Insurance companies, credit card approvals, banks, school loans and tax forms all have your social security number on them. When this information is submitted to a company, it sits in the database.
If the information is on paper, it eventually gets sent to a warehouse for safe keeping. Even major companies are often victims of data breaches where hackers steal credit card numbers and social security numbers.
Don’t use confidential information as your password.
3. Any Password Without a Number or Symbol
The stronger your password the more secure it is. People who use one word like “hotdog” are more likely to be victims of a data breach. Using an alphanumeric code with symbols is the best way to keep your information safe.
Instead of “applesauce” try @PPles@uce786. The more complex your code, the harder it is for hackers to get a hold of it. If you’re having a hard time remembering such a code yourself, use something that is personal to you that no one else knows.
For example, if you knew a girl in high school who you didn’t get along with, you hate brussel sprouts and your childhood home was 82 Highland Park Drive, your password could be Colleen&BS82. It includes capital and lower-case letters, symbols and numbers.
Who could forget Colleen? She was so mean. How could anyone forget the terrible taste of brussel sprouts? How could you forget your childhood home? Your mom drilled that number into your head so many times.
This one is almost as bad as 12345. If you use it, it’s almost like you’re trying to dare people to hack into your account. When you type a password into the box, and the site rejects it because it’s too weak, do not simply type in StrongPassword.
It’s shocking how many people use this password every year. If you must use StrongPassword, at least use 5tr0ngP455w0rd. Then again, it’s better to just use a generator to create something more advanced.
An overly common password is actually the word, “password.” It’s actually among the top of lists for most used credentials. This one is so bad, it made the top 5 in several lists dating back to 2013.
Password is the most obvious in the bunch. Today, most systems will simply kick out an error if you try to use it. In reality, it won’t even reach minimum requirements for these systems anyway.
But if given the option, avoid using “password” as your password.
Come on guys, grow up. It’s laughable how many people use 696969 as their password. Who was the first person to think this number was one that would be unique that no one else would guess?
As childish as it may seem, it’s common enough to find itself used throughout the world.
One can only wonder how many CEOs and hedge fund managers use it on their briefcases. Let’s hope they don’t use it to log onto their online accounts.
7. Your Name
Unfortunately, many people will use their name as part of their online credentials. It’s a no-brainer for people trying to steal your information, and it’s often the first thing your kid would try if he or she wanted to steal your password.
If your name is your password, your child is probably at home looking at god-knows-what.
Along the line of poor passwords include your kids’ names, birthdays, your current street name and your pets names…all of which is information others can easily access.
8. Dream Board Passcodes
Okay, so you want to win a million dollars. Don’t make it your password in hopes that it will come true if you think about it enough.
Also leave off other dream board ideas, like Corvette, Lose30Pounds, BodyLikeMollySimms and other passwords that people think they’re the only ones to think up. If you’re really having a hard time coming up with password names, use a strong password generator to help get your ideas flowing.
9. The Website Name
Don’t make your password Target12345 if you’re shopping at Target.com. Don’t make it Walmart, VictoriaSecret or any other name of a website that you’re shopping at. It’s easy to guess.
And if you’re using the password Target12345, there’s a good chance you’re using Walmart12345 for your Walmart account. Now someone not only has your Target password, they have all your passwords.
Hackers are often good at identifying trends and patterns. It’s how they develop many bots to attack websites. Using a proper name in this fashion can easily open the flood gates of identity theft.
10. Your Old Password
When a website asks you to change your password, change it; don’t try to use your old password again. They may have asked you to change your password for security reasons, because their system was breached or to help keep you safe.
Today, a lot of systems prevent the use of your old passwords. This is helpful to keep your information private. But don’t be afraid of changing things up on your own.
Build Stronger Credentials
Think of it this way; if it’s too easy for you to guess, then it’s too easy for a hacker to figure out. There’s nothing wrong with writing down advanced passwords as long as you keep the paper in a safe place.
Your credit score, bank account and even a book club membership can be taken from you because of a data breach. Use some tricks to create stronger passwords that are more difficult to crack. It reduces your chances of being a victim.