SplashData revealed the worst passwords of 2014, and the results really were embarrassing. At one point or another, everyone has had to choose a password and been challenged by the number of security features that are in place to ensure that a “good” password is created. Some platforms and websites have stronger criteria than others while some have virtually no prevention in place. Simply choose a password of your choosing, no matter how basic that password might be, and you are on your way.
However, 2014 was a big year for data breaches and cyber attacks. While many may think businesses and large corporations are the first ones who are targeted by hackers – that might be a fallacy when looking at the amount of data that can be tapped into by obtaining personal information from an individual’s bank account, or even Facebook profile. That’s why choosing a password is so important. 2014 might have been a busy year for some major names who were getting hacked – most notably Home Depot, or Sony Pictures – there were many positive changes made in the security industry online.
For example, Mark Burnett, who assisted with SplashData’s study of the worst passwords of 2014 said “The good news is that it appears that more people are moving away from using these passwords. In 2014, the top 25 passwords represented about 2.2 percent of passwords exposed. While still frightening, that’s the lowest percentage of people using the most common passwords I have seen in recent studies.”
NSA hacked North Korea in 2010 and knew Sony Cyberattack was looming
The top passwords that appeared on the list were “123456,” “password,” and “12345.” Some of the other notables that made the top ten list were words like “qwerty,” “baseball,” “dragon,” “football,” and “monkey.”
The Top 25 Worst Passwords of 2014
- baseball (New to top 25)
- dragon (New to top 25)
- football (New to top 25)
- mustang (New to top 25)
- access (New to top 25)
- master (New to top 25)
- michael (New to top 25)
- superman (New to top 25)
- 696969 (New to top 25)
- batman (New to top 25)
Many of the top passwords on the list were numerical passwords – that rose a red flag with many as most sites will not allow you to use a strictly numeric password at all. That being said though, even with the numbers reducing, it still shows the importance of using a password that has significant differences and includes special characters, multiple capitalizations, as well as non-words. The study showed that those passwords that didn’t follow traditional language would provide the strongest security for most platforms.