It might be obvious, but adding characters and complexity improves security.
Protecting your online identity by using the name of your first born child or your beloved Golden Retriever as your password might seem an appropriate homage. But a new infographic from PasswordGenie predicts dire consequences for users of unimaginative passwords. In fact, the simpler the password, the faster a hacker can gain access to your protected information and wreak havoc on your finances and your life.
Data from recent password breaches at Yahoo, LinkedIn and Rockyou.com reveals that some passwords are particularly vulnerable. An all lowercase password with 6 characters can be hacked into within 10 minutes, while adding complexity with additional characters and the use of upper case letters, numbers and symbols can extend that timeframe into decades and even millennia.
Common components of easy-to-hack passwords:
1. Repeating previously used passwords
2. Names of close family members or friends
3. Your name
4. Words in the dictionary
5. Common names
6. Repeating your login code
7. Keyboard patterns and swipes (i.e., 123456 or QWERTY)
Click on the infographic for a larger view.