Password picks dumb and dumber

Photo / Thinkstock
Photo / Thinkstock

At first blush, SplashData's annual list of the 25 most common passwords - compiled from files posted online after security breaches - is not the sort of document that instils great faith in the cleverness of the online masses. On the other hand, some password has to be the most popular. Wouldn't it be weird if it weren't something really dumb and obvious?

Keep in mind that the report only tells us the popularity of the top 25 passwords relative to one another, not their absolute popularity. It's conceivable, then, that both "password" and "123456" are less common across the internet than they were a year ago. In fact, SplashData chief executive Morgan Slain says the weakest passwords' popularity has fallen in recent years - but only a bit.

"We keep hoping for steeper declines as people get more educated about the risks of simple passwords."

So here's the firm's list of this year's 25 worst passwords, with expert analysis of what each one says about the sort of person who uses it.

1. 123456

I can't be bothered to take even the most basic step to protect my personal information. Seriously, just go ahead and take it.

2. password

I failed to understand the question.

3. 12345678

I tried "123456", but the computer said I had to use at least eight characters.

4. qwerty

Aren't I clever? My password is written right there on the keyboard.

5. abc123

I'm a fan of the Jackson Five.

6. 123456789

I'm a positive-integer maximalist.

7. 111111

I managed to find one of the few passwords that's both easy to crack and hard to remember. (How many 1s was it, again?)

8. 1234567

Seven is my lucky number!

9. iloveyou

I'm Theodore Twombly.

10. adobe123

You may have cracked my Adobe password, hacker, but you'll never guess my password for Microsoft!

11. 123123

Aha! You were expecting 123456, weren't you?

12. admin

I should be fired immediately.

13. 1234567890

I have mastered the base-10 numeral system.

14. letmein

Might as well let everyone else in, too.

15. photoshop

They told me not to use the same password for every program, so ...

16. 1234

I can't be bothered to take even the most basic step to protect my personal information, and neither can the people who run this site.

17. monkey

I am an actual monkey.

18. shadow

I fancy myself quite sneaky.

19. sunshine

I cry myself to sleep at night.

20. 12345

I cannot be bothered to take even the most basic advice etc.

21. password1

My last password was compromised, so I added a "1" this time.

22. princess

I'm waiting to be swept off my feet by a Nigerian prince.

23. azerty

Hey, at least it's better than qwerty.

24. trustno1

It's not paranoia if they really do keep guessing my password.

25. 000000

My day job is coming up with nuclear launch codes.

- NZ Herald

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