Nearly 20% of passwords are compromised, report says

Globally, over half of the passwords are reused, exposing personal and corporate data at risk.

After analyzing hundreds of millions of anonymous data points, privacy firm Dashlane released a report on password health.

The average password health score globally falls within the “needs improvement” range, meaning that passwords might be weak, compromised, or reused.

In fact, the report found that globally 51% of passwords are reused. An average person in the US has 70-80 online accounts, so one compromised password could lead to dozens of hacked accounts.

What is more, nearly 20% of passwords are compromised. Dashlane considers it an incredibly high number, given that an average Dashlane user has around 240 online accounts.

“Passwords are often the weak link in an organization’s or individual’s cybersecurity — in fact, for Basic Web Application Attacks (BWAA), over 80% of breaches can be attributed to stolen credentials,” the report reads.

The company warned that the number of online accounts per person is growing, so password security should be an essential part of an organization’s cybersecurity strategy.

How to protect yourself

If you can remember your password, consider it weak.

“Use unique generated passwords that you cannot pronounce yourself. Another crucial thing is to use multifactor authentication whenever possible. So even if your accounts get breached, you will still have this additional layer of security,” Gediminas Brencius, Head of Product for NordPass, once told Cybernews.

He also suggested using compartments for your information. If you have many different social accounts, you should use a specific email address for those.

Cybernews researchers have also documented the most commonly used passwords. If you noticed that your own personal passwords have similar patterns to the ones we analyzed, we recommend you visit our Data Leak Checker to see if your email address and other personal data has been exposed in a data breach.

And if you don’t want to end up on that list - the largest database of known breached accounts, with more than 15 billion compromised accounts - we also recommend using password managers.

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