Report shows many web surfers are still using ‘123456’ as their password

For some reason, many web surfers accessing the internet don’t appear to be listening. Despite warnings by experts and countless reports of hacking, identity theft, online fraud, and more, there are people still using “123456” as a password. That simple sequence of numbers reigns king on the new top 100 worst passwords list of 2017.

According to numbers provided by SplashData, the use of “123456” as the No. 1 bad password hasn’t changed in years. The firm provides its list of the top 100 worst passwords each year, and shows that “123456” officially unseated “password” from the top spot in 2013. Since then, 123456 remains at the top of the list followed by “password” and several other common words and numbers.

California-based SplashData provides security applications and services, including its SplashID Personal Password Manager, and its TeamsID Business Password Manager. The firm releases its annual list to encourage internet surfers to use stronger passwords. The firm’s data supposedly derives from millions of leaked passwords discovered throughout the year.

Here are the top 10 worst passwords used on the internet starting from SplashData’s very first report in 2011:

2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
1 password password 123456 123456 123456 123456 123456
2 123456 123456 password password password password password
3 12345678 12345678 12345678 12345 12345678 12345 12345678
4 qwerty abc123 qwerty 12345678 qwerty 12345678 qwerty
5 abc123 qwerty abc123 qwerty 12345 football 12345
6 monkey monkey 123456789 123456789 123456789 qwerty 123456789
7 1234567 letmein 111111 1234 football 1234567890 letmein
8 letmein dragon 1234567 baseball 1234 1234567 1234567
9 trustnot 111111 Iloveyou dragon 1234567 princess football
10 dragon baseball adobe123 football baseball 1234 iloveyou

As the chart shows, “password” and “123456” are locked in a heated battle for the top spot. “12345” and “12345678” fight for third place while “qwerty” and “12345678” battle for the fourth position. One of the troubling factors is that the top 10 consist of similar words and strings of numbers over the last seven years, including “football,” “baseball,” dragon,” and “iloveyou.”

But SplashData’s annual reports don’t mean everyone on the planet is using these passwords. The company is merely pointing out bad password use in hopes that future lists will eventually wither and die. But given that these words and number strings are pulled from millions of leaked passwords each year, you can see why hackers are having a field day breaking into online accounts.

Most major websites now demand passwords consisting of upper and lower-case letters, numbers, and symbols of a specific length (character count). They even offer two-step authentication that requires a mobile device to authorize logins. But as the lists shown above illustrate, the top bad passwords consist of all letters or all numbers.

Moreover, security experts will warn that you shouldn’t use passwords that are directly related to your life, such as using your birthday, favorite movie, child’s name, and so on. Passwords should essentially be phrases that mean absolutely nothing, but can be easily remembered. “Sciss0rzCutzCh1ck0nz” could be a tough nut to crack.

Of course, using a password manager like LastPass or 1Password to handle all your accounts and passwords is an ideal security strategy as well. These services are subscription-based but eliminate the need to manage multiple passwords for multiple accounts.

Mobile

Happy Valentine’s Day! Coffee Meets Bagel dating app data may have been breached

Are you planning on using Coffee Meets Bagel to find love on Valentine's Day? If you've been using the app for a while, you'll probably want to change your password -- the company said a data breach may have taken place before May 2018.
Wearables

Win your gal's heart (and wrist) with the most stylish smartwatches for her

If you're looking to buy that special woman in your life a smartwatch this Valentine's Day, we're here to help. Here are our top picks of the best smartwatches on the market for ladies. We have something for any style or budget.
Mobile

Forgot your Android password or PIN? Here’s what you need to do

It’s a horrible feeling when you forget your Android password, PIN, or pattern and can’t access your smartphone. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to gain access to your device. Find out what your options are right here.
Computing

Use one of these password managers to help protect yourself online

The internet can be a scary place, especially if you don't have a proper password manager. This guide will show you the best password managers you can get right now, including both premium and free options.
Computing

What is Wi-Fi 6? Here's a look at the next evolution of the wireless standard

We're exploring the new naming convention for wireless standards, how it affects the devices you buy, and what the upcoming Wi-Fi generation is changing for the better.
Computing

Windows is getting a face-lift in 2020, but you can get a sneak peek right now

Microsoft is increasing the lead time for an upcoming major update to Windows 10, giving Windows Insiders the ability to test it right now, even though it's not set for release until 2020.
Emerging Tech

A.I.-powered website creates freakishly lifelike faces of people who don’t exist

No, this isn't a picture of a missing person. It's a face generated by a new artificial intelligence on the website ThisPersonDoesNotExist.com. Here's how the impressive A.I. works.
Deals

The best Presidents’ Day sales 2019: Amazon, Walmart, Dell, and more

Presidents' Day sales are a great chance to score electronics, clothing, home and office stuff, and other goodies at a discount. We’ve smoked out a large handful of the best of these Presidents' Day deals, from tech to bedding, to help…
Deals

Keep your MacBook safe and dry with an Under Armour backpack for under $50

Under Armour is having a huge sale this weekend to help you on your quest for a better backpack. The UA Outlet Exclusive sale is going on now through Monday, February 18th, offering great discounts on stormproof backpacks.
Deals

Walmart Presidents’ Day sale: Instant Pot, Google Home, and 4K TV deals

Presidents' Day weekend is one of the best times of the year to find deep discounts on 4K TVs, laptops, Instant Pots, clothes, mattresses, and furniture. And Walmart is offering deals on all of those things and more.
Computing

The HoloLens 2 will be announced at MWC. Here's what we know about it so far

The HoloLens 2 is ripe for an announcement. Here's what Microsoft has revealed so far, what's likely in store for the next generation HoloLens, and everything that we know about this mixed reality headset.
Computing

Don't know what to do with all your old DVDs? Here's how to convert them to MP4

Given today's rapid technological advancements, physical discs are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Check out our guide on how to convert a DVD to MP4, so you can ditch discs for digital files.
Computing

Wi-Fi helps connect all of our devices at high-speed, but what exactly is it?

What is Wi-Fi? It's a technology we all use everyday to connect all of our portable devices, but understanding how it works and how far it's come from its humble beginnings is another thing entirely.
Computing

In the age of Alexa and Siri, Cortana’s halo has grown dim

In a sea of voice assistants, Cortana has become almost irrelevant. The nearly five-year-old voice assistant is seeing little love from consumers, and here’s why it is dead.