Weak Passwords: Are You Making It Too Easy For Criminals?

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The password to your online account is like the key to your front door. How strong are your passwords? We’ll address some troubling facts about weak passwords and what you can do to make them stronger.

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Weak Passwords

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24 comments on “Weak Passwords: Are You Making It Too Easy For Criminals?

  • I notice you didn’t mention including Special Characters or the length of a Password as strengthening factors. I use an 18-character Password with a mix of Upper and Lower Case letters, numbers, and Special Characters, and change it every month. I tested it on an Internet app that shows how long it takes a PC to crack a Password, and it came up with a result of 10 Decillion Years.

  • bob price says:

    Even if you prefer simple pw’s, all you need to do is edit them and add a few characters. So, my name bobprice becomes bob###price.
    Very effective.

  • I used Roboform allready before their connection with Zonealarm and I am very happy with that product. It enables me to manage my more than 250 passwords in a very reliable way!

  • DrMike Story says:

    Just checked your RoboForm and it says the following as system requirements …
    Microsoft® Windows® 95, 98, Me, 2000, XP, Server 2003, or Vista.

    Presumably this means that it won’t work on WIN 7 … RIght ?

    Please let me know !

    God bless!


  • I have been using Roboform gor several years and sroblgy recommend it – easy to use, you only need to remember your master password; and it will generate passwprds for you.

  • Hi,

    I don’t use Roboform and have no intention of doing so. I use my memory. I can almost hear the cries of don’t be stupid how can you remember a ten character password. The answer is yes you can and it‘s easy, but ten is not enough. Fourteen is not enough! Sadly I have to confess to using, on occasion, software to crack forgotten passwords. No system is fool-proof and fourteen can be cracked. You need a password of around seventeen characters and that includes letters and numbers, the pound sign, the dollar , asterisk, brackets etc. Regrettably this combination of characters is the hardest to remember but for simpler combinations there is a solution.


  • Why doesn’t Zone Alarm offer Large Software Password Manager program anymore? You sold it a few years ago and it was great.

  • To prevent hackers automatic programs from trying dozens of passwords to gain access, why couldn’t websites just deny access for 5 minutes after receiving, say, 10 incorrect password tries?

  • Another technique is to create passwords based on the first character of each word of a sentence. Take this sentence: “My sister Beth claims to have gained seven pounds during the 2013 Thanksgiving weekend!” This could become a password like this: “MsBcthg7#dt2013Tw!” — impossible for a casual hacker to crack during a person’s lifetime using current technology. Note that numbers become their digits and symbols such as # * + – = & @ % and $ are used in place of their respective word, if that symbol is allowed by the system where the password is being created. Also note that words that are capitalized are converted to a capital letter. A dictionary attack will never come up with this password because there are no dictionary words in the resultant password. Need a reminder? A post-it that says “Beth’s on a diet again” could be enough of a hint to remind you what the phrase was about, while denying a social engineer anything useful for cracking your password.

  • Kelly Wright says:

    I tried to download the free version of the 2015 zonealarm version on my android phone and it replied it could Not, not compatible to this device. Can you tell me why? It is a smartphone! Thank you. K.W.W.


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