Can you guess the world’s most commonly used password? It’s a lot less unimaginative than you’d think.
A study of the most common passwords in 2014 by software firm SplashData shows “123456” was the most frequently used for the fourth year in a row.
The annual “Worst Passwords” survey, compiled from 3.3 million leaked passwords, also revealed “password” was the second most popular for the fourth year running.
SplashData CEO Morgan Slain said internet users were putting themselves at risk of being hacked or having their identities stolen.
“Passwords based on simple patterns on your keyboard remain popular despite how weak they are,” Mr Slain said.
“As more websites require stronger passwords or combinations of letters and numbers, longer keyboard patterns are becoming common passwords, and they are still not secure.”
Number sequences appeared five times in the top 10, with unimaginative web users securing their personal data with combinations like “1234”, “12345”, “12345678” and”123456789″.
Other notable mentions in the top 25 were passwords like “batman”, “superman” and “baseball”, which all made their debut on the list this year.
Mr Slain warned people to avoid using their favourite sport or team as their password, as well as their birth year or children’s names.
Online security expert Mark Burnett said the figures were “frightening”.
“The bad news from my research is that this year’s most commonly used passwords are pretty consistent with prior years,” Mr Burnett said.’
“As always, we hope that with more publicity about how risky it is to use weak passwords, more people will start taking simple steps to protect themselves by using stronger passwords and using different passwords for different websites.”
Worst Passwords of 2014:
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