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Author Topic: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)  (Read 7201 times)

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Samker

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Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« on: 08. October 2009., 07:24:39 »


The Hotmail hack attack this week has laid bare the woeful password choices of web users, as reports emerged that up to 1 million web email accounts could have been compromised.

The most common password was "123456", while many users had names or dates of birth - all easy pickings for the determined password cracker.

Password security was thrown into the spotlight this week after it was revealed that 10,000 Hotmail user names and passwords had been leaked online. A day later, a separate list of 20,000 addresses and passwords for Gmail, Yahoo and AOL were found on the web.

The size of the lists, one of which contains only email addresses beginning with A and B, have led security experts to fear that thousands more accounts have been compromised.

Hackers frequently target email accounts because from there they can obtain passwords to other more important accounts such as internet banking. Often, the same password is used for multiple online accounts.

Hijacked email addresses are also used to conduct spam campaigns and targeted phishing attacks on the victim's contacts. Security firm Websense reported that some of the addresses compromised this week were already being used for this purpose.

A security researcher was able to obtain the list of 10,000 Hotmail account details before it was removed from the web and found the passwords used were alarmingly simple.

Bogdan Calin, of Acunetix, found "123456" and "123456789" were the most common, appearing 82 times, while 12345678, 1234567 and 111111 also appeared in the top 10.

Furthermore, 42 per cent of the passwords used only lower case letters from a to z. Just 6 per cent mixed letters and numbers.

The longest password was 30 characters - lafaroleratropezoooooooooooooo - but this still evidently did not prevent the user's account from being hacked. The shortest password was one character: ")".

"A big majority of users still use very poor passwords," Calin concluded.

Security experts say people should always use a combination of letters and numbers in their passwords and avoid those that are easily guessed such as names, dates of birth or words from the dictionary.

F-Secure is even advising people to write down their passwords and put them in their wallets, arguing that people use weak passwords because they can't remember strong ones.

Neil O'Neil, a digital forensics investigator at The Logic Group told Computerworld the security breach was likely to spread even further.

"Making the breach public so soon after the attack occurred has allowed unethical hackers to access the passwords very easily, even though they were deleted a couple of days ago at the request of Microsoft," he said.

"The list went through A and B, so you would think whoever released these has more. And if you do the maths, they could have more than a million passwords."

The BBC reported that Google is already aware of a third list, but it is not clear how many names are on it: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8294714.stm

Users of web email accounts are being advised to change their passwords immediately.

(Stuff)

Samker's Computer Forum - SCforum.info

Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« on: 08. October 2009., 07:24:39 »




bobbintb

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #1 on: 09. October 2009., 18:27:27 »
working it IT, this isnt surprising.

b_gates

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #2 on: 13. October 2009., 00:02:38 »
oh they break down through Microsoft Castle

Fireberg

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #3 on: 13. October 2009., 17:45:28 »
Hard to believe thats there are people who is using sequencies of numbers!!


thanx

zsaurabh

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #4 on: 14. October 2009., 01:08:51 »
does Hotmail have policy of Blocking account after 5 or 10 unsuccessfull attempts????? if threre is brute force attack?

fireballgonzales

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #5 on: 14. October 2009., 08:22:16 »
I kinda thought they did have a blocking policy, seems strange that one of the more popular email providers cant stop brute force attacks (please correct me if am mistaken) as any/all passwords is suceptible to crack given the appropriate time and tools.

So blame here is two folds, the user who chooses a poor password and the site/provider that allows several trial and error attempts to login.

low

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #6 on: 14. October 2009., 11:05:18 »
Cant imagine someone would use that password. Imagine if one's PayPal account also uses 123456!

blade86sam

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #7 on: 15. October 2009., 01:33:05 »
lol that would b funny if that was the case using such a pw for paypal.. but then again i wouldnt be surprised..

F3RL

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #8 on: 15. October 2009., 03:18:54 »
Passwords should be fairly complicated; like 81HJNzkq!pgnau61
(year, name prefix, char, place born, country code) I dont know. that's how I remember all my passwords.
well? understand ma bad English.

kaige89

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Re: Hotmail hacks easy as 123456 (most common passwords)
« Reply #9 on: 21. October 2009., 03:01:29 »
It's hard to remember that kind of passwords ha-ha

 

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