If your password is not even 8 characters long, change it immediately  | #cybersecurity | #cyberattack

Short passwords are easier to remember but they come with a lot of security risks. When you pick an easy password for your own convenience, you are often at risk of losing access to your account, but easy passwords can be guessed without even requiring technical skills. Most people are in the habit of putting their date of birth as the password because it is easier to remember. What they do not understand is that by doing so they are making it easier for the hackers to gain access to their email or social media accounts. Hike, a California-based cyber security company, in its latest findings has revealed that it only takes seconds to crack a password that is not longer than 8 characters.

We usually keep passwords that are easier to remember and when we are overly cautious about something, we pick a password that has a healthy mix of upper case, lower case, special characters, and numbers. But Hive, in its report, has stated that even the reports, even the passwords which we think are harder to crack, can be decoded in approximately eight hours by an average hacker. The report says that any password which is bereft of any form of complications can be hacked instantly without needing high-end systems.

However, if the password is longer than 8 characters, and has around 15 or more characters with a mix of upper case, lower case, special characters, and numbers, it can take more than a trillion years to crack. As per a colorful chart prepared by Hive, it takes around nine months to crack a password with 18 characters consisting of numbers only, 23 million years if the password consists of only lower case letters, 61 million years if it consists of upper and lower case both and 100 trillion years if it consists of numbers, uppercase, lowercase. So this shows that the chances of an account getting hacked with such a password combination is almost negligible. For as long as you live, you may never lose access to your account because your password would be almost impossible to hack.

In a blog post, Hiva explains how password cracking is done. “Cracking means making a list of all combinations of characters on your keyboard and then hashing them out. By finding matches between this list and the hashes of the stolen passwords, hackers can figure out your true password- letting them log into your favorite websites. And if you use the same password on multiple sites, you are in for a bad time.” It is also important to keep separate passwords for separate accounts, because if you use the same password in all your social media handles and if it gets compromised, chances are that all your accounts will get compromised too.

While it is also imperative to use a longish password, the chances of forgetting it are harder than the chances of losing access to the account due to hacking. So, the best way to make your password harder to guess is by using multiple characters that are different from one another. You could keep lowercase, upper case, numbers, special characters. And do not use predictable subjects like your birthday or your dog’s name as the password, because anybody who knows you closely will be able to guess it.

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