Thursday, 9 June 2016

So are YOU password savvy?

Can you believe it - Mark Zuckerberg's personal Twitter and Pinterest accounts were hacked over the weekend.  Shock, horror.

The hackers apparently found his password in the recent Linkedin dump and guess what?  His password of choice was "dadada".  What?  Surely the CEO of Facebook has more sense to ensure his security is topnotch?  It appears not and clearly he used the same password for several sites, which is just like the majority of people.

 Until you've been hacked and had personal data stolen or your bank account swiped clean or numerous entries appear on your credit card, you may continue to live in a fluffy cloud cuckoo land because you think nothing will ever happen to you -  right? Well wise up folks, internet fraudsters are out there to get your data, money and identity and it's happening every day and every second.

According to survey results, the age group 51 - 69 are most security savvy, having a unique password for every online account they have.  Millennials are 20% less likely to have, on balance, 5 or more passwords for their online accounts.  So a pat on the back for the older generation!

Even using a long and strong password, but a different varient for each site, has problems.  Once a hacker has cracked the password, it's an easy task to crack the variables for the other sites.

It appears that older people tend to use 2FA (two factor authentication) probably because they have more time on their hands.  The extra step is definitely worth it  and it just means having to prove yourself twice before you can log in. 

To understand the basics click here

Following the LinkedIn debarcle the most commonly used passwords are:-
  • 123456
  • linkedin
  • password
  • 123456789
  • 12345678
  • 111111
  • 1234567
  • sunshine
  • qwerty
  • 654321 

(source Business Insider - Rob Price)

Hopefully your passwords are far more robust!  Whatever age you are, take internet security seriously and get yourself some two factor authentication.  http:/ is the one this old bird uses!  

So be super, super safe not sorry. 

Tina Bricknell
The Merlin Team

Images courtesy of Stuart Miles

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