In spite of concerns over cybersecurity breaches, millions of people are still using easy-to-guess passwords for work and personal accounts, leaving them at risk of being exploited by third parties, a new survey has shown.
The survey, conducted by the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), analyzed passwords belonging to accounts worldwide that had been breached.
It discovered that codes using names, sports teams and swear words, as well as, several combinations of numbers are common, warning that such passwords are not hard to crack, reports the CNN.
People who use well-known words or names for a password put themselves at risk of being hacked, said Dr Ian Levy, technical director of the NCSC.
“Nobody should protect sensitive data with something that can be guessed, like their first name, local football team or favourite band,” he said.
“Using hard-to-guess passwords is a strong first step and we recommend combining three random but memorable words. Be creative and use words memorable to you, so people can’t guess your password.”
Ashley and Michael were the most common names used while Liverpool topped the list of football clubs used as passwords.
When creating a strong password, long, complicated options should be avoided, according to the NCSC. It advised that people should string three random but memorable words together to use as a strong password.
This option, it said, would be difficult for hackers to crack to gain access to secure accounts such as email, bank accounts and online profiles.
The following is the top 100 of the most commonly hacked passwords, released by the NCSC: