10 Passwords Everyone Uses (And You Shouldn’t)

passwordsThere’s one good outcome from the Yahoo breach (a hacker defeated Yahoo’s firewalls, stole 450,000 accounts, and proceeded to post the user names and passwords onlines). You know all that dire advice about using numbers and letters and symbols in passwords? Turns out the Yahoo users didn’t. A peek at their twenty favorite passwords makes it clear once more that the biggest impediment to computer security remains human users:

  1. 123456′ used by 1666 (0.38%)
  2. ‘password’ used by 780 (0.18%)
  3. welcome’ used by 436 (0.1%)
  4. ‘ninja’ used by 333 (0.08%)
  5. ‘abc123’ used by 250 (0.06%)
  6. ‘123456789’ used by 222 (0.05%)
  7. ‘12345678’ used by 208 (0.05%)
  8. ‘sunshine’ used by 205 (0.05%)
  9. ‘princess’ used by 202 (0.05%)
  10. ‘qwerty’ used by 172 (0.04%)

If you’re thinking this looks familiar, you’re right. Here are the top 25 from 2011:

  1. password
  2. 123456
  3. 12345678
  4. qwerty
  5. abc123
  6. monkey
  7. 1234567
  8. letmein
  9. trustno1
  10. dragon
  11. baseball
  12. 111111
  13. iloveyou
  14. master
  15. sunshine
  16. ashley
  17. bailey
  18. passw0rd
  19. shadow
  20. 123123
  21. 654321
  22. superman
  23. qazwsx
  24. michael
  25. Football

Let’s review Password 101:

  • include different types of letters, numbers and special characters
  • longer is better
  • use different passwords for different accounts

I’m happy to share that my passwords aren’t on either of these lists. How about yours?

Comic credit: XKCD


Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the editor/author of over a hundred tech ed resources including a K-12 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum. She is an adjunct professor in tech ed, Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, contributor to NEA Today, and author of the tech thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and Twenty-four Days. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

Author: Jacqui
Welcome to my virtual classroom. I've been a tech teacher for 15 years, but modern technology offers more to get my ideas across to students than at any time in my career. Drop in to my class wikis, classroom blog, our internet start pages. I'll answer your questions about how to teach tech, what to teach when, where the best virtual sites are. Need more--let's chat about issues of importance in tech ed. Want to see what I'm doing today? Click the gravatar and select the grade.

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