If all your online passwords are simple, easy to remember, or the same for all your logins, you might want to think about changing them – particularly if they appear on a newly published list.
New research from NordPass has revealed the UK’s most common passwords, many of which are so easy to guess that hackers can crack them in less than one second with the use of automated software.
According to the firm when a Windows or Mac computer is infected with malware, passwords saved on browsers can be compromised, especially if they are easy to guess.
The most used password in the UK is “123456”, ahead of “password”, “qwerty” and “liverpool”, with “123456” also the most common and easily guessed in wider data from 35 countries. That six-digit sequence was also the most used worldwide for online shopping accounts, streaming services, and email accounts.
31% of the 200 most popular passwords are numerical sequences, such as the unbelievably simple “000000”. The tenth most picked in the UK was “chelsea” and fourteenth was “cheese”, such choices giving away the personal nature of people’s passwords through things they happen to be interested in.
The research also found that Brits chose several passwords related to animals such as “monkey” and “dragon”, and other football teams “arsenal” and “rangers”. Here are the UK’s top ten most used passwords:
You can view the complete list here.
“With the terrifying risks password users encounter, alternative methods in online authentication are now essential,” said Tomas Smalakys, CTO of NordPass. “Passkey technology, considered the most promising innovation to replace passwords, is successfully paving its way, gaining trust among individuals and progressive companies worldwide.”
NordPass says biometric passkeys such as face scans and fingerprints are more secure than traditional passwords entered via keyboard. Google recently launched its own passkey service for Google accounts that can use such proof of identity to log in, rather than passwords.
If you don’t want to dabble in passkeys quite yet, NordPass also shared four tips to help you improve your use of passwords:
Use complex passwords – Your password should be at least 20 characters long and include a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special symbols.
Never reuse passwords – Never use the same password across multiple sites or services
Check your passwords – Take the time to regularly assess your password health. Identify weak, old, or reused passwords
Use a password manager – Generate and store complex and unique passwords for each of your accounts with password manager software