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'Welcome,' 'Jesus,' 'Ninja' join worst passwords list for 2012

October 25, 2012 9:58am
What could be so frightening about the words "welcome" and "Jesus"? Well, they may be very scary if you use them as your passwords.

The two words, along with "ninja," "mustang," and "password1" joined the list of the worst passwords for 2012, according to password management software maker SplashData.

“Even though each year hacking tools get more sophisticated, thieves still tend to prefer easy targets. Just a little bit more effort in choosing better passwords will go a long way toward making you safer online,” said SplashData CEO Morgan Slain.

However, SplashData said the top three worst passwords from last year's list kept their spots in this year's edition.

These are "password," "123456," and "12345678," it said.

SplashData, provider of the SplashID Safe line of password management applications, releases an annual list of worst passwords to encourage the adoption of stronger passwords.

"At this time of year, people enjoy focusing on scary costumes, movies and decorations, but those who have been through it can tell you how terrifying it is to have your identity stolen because of a hacked password,” said Slain.

“We're hoping 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," he added.

The full list of worst passwords for 2012, and how they fared last year, is as follows:

1. password (Unchanged)
2, 123456 (Unchanged)
3. 12345678 (Unchanged)
4. abc123 (Up 1)
5. qwerty (Down 1)
6. monkey (Unchanged)
7. letmein (Up 1)
8. dragon (Up 2)
9. 111111 (Up 3)
10. baseball (Up 1)
11. iloveyou (Up 2)
12. trustno1 (Down 3)
13. 1234567 (Down 6)
14. sunshine (Up 1)
15. master (Down 1)
16. 123123 (Up 4)
17. welcome (New)
18. shadow (Up 1)
19. ashley (Down 3)
20. football (Up 5)
21. jesus (New)
22. michael (Up 2)
23. ninja     (New)
24. mustang (New)
25. password1 (New)

SplashData said based its top 25 list on files containing millions of stolen passwords posted online by hackers.

It advised consumers or businesses using any of the passwords on the list to change them immediately.

Suggestions

SplashData also suggested making passwords more secure with these tips:

- Use passwords of eight characters or more with mixed types of characters.
- Avoid using the same username/password combination for multiple websites. Especially risky is using the same password for entertainment sites that you do for online email, social networking, and financial services.
- Use different passwords for each new website or service you sign up for.

— LBG, GMA News
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