We all know we should have a strong password to prevent hackers from attaining sensitive information; however, a study from NordPass found that only 33% of users changed the default passwords on their IoT devices, leaving the rest susceptible to attack.
Hacking is big business and unfortunately, hackers are looking to access your information through your password. A company falls victim to ransomware every 11 seconds, and each year more than a billion accounts are hacked.
Your best defense is uncrackable – and unhackable passwords. But how do these criminals hack your password? Here are some ways in which they gain access:
There are several ways to crack your password. The easiest one is to buy your password from the dark web. There’s a lot of money in buying and selling login credentials on the black market. This means, if you’ve used the same password for a while, chances are it’s been compromised.
If your password is not on the dark web, hackers can try this brute force attack to guess your password. The attacker will guess every combination possible until they hit yours. They do this through automated software that allows combinations to be tried as quickly as possible. Some software lets a hacker guess billions of combinations per second. Generally, the rule is anything under 12 characters is easier to hack and, therefore, more vulnerable. As you’ve probably heard, the longer your password, the better.
With this type of attack, the hacker attempts to guess your password through a prearranged list of words such as you’d find in a dictionary. This generally works if your password is a common word. Unfortunately, only uncommon words or phrases generally escape this type of attack.
Phishing is one of the most common hacker tactics. Like other phishing tactics, the hacker tries to trick users into giving over or revealing personal information here. For example, a phishing email may tell you something is wrong with your credit card and then redirect you to a new website, prompting you to enter your information. The same can happen with passwords. For example, a phishing email may say you need to reset a password. Then individuals reenter their information on a phony website.
So how can you prevent your password from being hacked? First, make sure your password uses the following characteristics or use a password manager and randomize your passwords.
- Use a mix of characters. The more you use unusual characters, the harder your password will be to crack. Try adding a combination of upper and lower case letters, and numbers and symbols.
- Length. The longer the password, the better. As a rule, don’t use anything under 15 characters.
- Avoid common words and substitutions. We know that hackers can easily guess common words, but they can also guess common substitutions for letters. So a password that is N00dles1 is as easy to guess as Noodles1.
These steps will greatly reduce your ability to be hacked. Remember, it’s also a good idea to change your password often. If you or your company is handling especially sensitive data, you may want to take even further precautions. For only $3 per month per user, CHIPS can provide a secure password vault that will make the process of creating and using complex passwords easy to use and manage.
For more information on how to secure your network and company assets, visit our website for more information: https://www.prevent-ransomware.com