The Nine Passwords Experts Warn You Should Never Use

Don't mind me, just off to make some changes...
Oscar Wong via Getty Images

If you’re anything like me, you’ll sometimes wake up in a cold sweat thinking about having your online information stolen. After all, everything from your bank details to your passport info is likely on the web now ― all it takes to access the sensitive data is a successful login.

Which is why (I’m sorry, fellow forgetful people) making your passwords as diverse and complicated as you can is so important. As John Stirzaker, consumer expert at said, “It’s shocking to learn how many passcodes have been leaked which means millions face having their bank details stolen by online criminals. We don’t want anyone falling victim to hackers by simply choosing a password which is easy to crack or by using the same one for multiple accounts.”

Thankfully, NetVouchers have shared the nine passwords you should avoid completely if you want to keep your data safe. These are:

1) Literally any identical password

I know it, you know it, but it bears repeating ― you should never, ever use the same password across multiple accounts. “If a hacker cracks one password and it’s used for all of your other accounts, they’ll have full access to your information and potentially bank details. Make sure to change it up for each account and to enable two-factor authentication for an extra layer of protection,” NetVouchers say.

2) Your mother’s maiden name

The problem with this, NetVouchers say, is that it’s both easy to guess and can provide answers for any additional security questions sites have.

3) Your street name

It’s one of the easiest pieces of info a hacker can find out about you, so avoid making it your password.

4) Your pet’s name

If you regularly, or even occasionally, post your pooch on social media, then hackers can find and use their name. NetVouchers recommend not even using it as a PART of your password.

5) For the love of all that’s holy, don’t use Password

Shockingly, many of us are still using the extremely basic and predictable code for some of our most important logins. “Never use “Password” “Password!” or even “Password1” as it’s the first step online criminals will test out, particularly if they think you’re less tech-savvy,” NetVouchers say.

6) A name followed by the number 1

This is almost as predictable as ‘Password,’ the experts say. Say you’ve had to change your password for a site, don’t change your new password to the old one with a ‘1’ at the end ― they advise you “include multiple numbers and put in a range of special characters” in your brand-new, completely different passcode.

7) Don’t use your surname

No mention of your surname, even with extra numbers, symbols, and digits, is safe, says NetVouchers. It’s some of the most accessible information about you, so keep it far away from your valuable data.

8) Super obvious patterns

1234, ABCD, and other patterns are incredibly easy to crack. “Having “1234” in the password is an easy code to crack, so be unique when using numbers or special characters,” NetVouchers say.

9) Anything in all caps

“Having caps in the password strengthens its protection against scammers, but simply having all of it in caps makes it weaker. Be savvy with capital letters by using them on random letters rather than all of them,” NetVoucher says.

Right, I’m off to do some resetting...