Seriously, you should change your passwords

Although some security professionals are expressing skepticism about recent reports that a Russian cybercrime group managed to steal 1.2 billion user IDs and passwords from websites around the world, there’s little doubt about the importance of changing your passwords on a regular basis.

Even with data breaches creating headline after headline, government agencies — along with the general U.S. workforce — continue to move toward a cloud- and mobile-based workflow. And with mobile device use and system integration continuing to grow, it is becoming increasingly vital to educate people on password protection.

Symantec has released an infographic showing how simple password protection and the use of two-factor authentication has cost organization millions and easy steps that can be taken to protect agency data.

Some of the facts Symantec uncovered:

  • The most common passwords in 2013 were “123456” and “password.”
  • Thirty-eight percent of people surveyed said they would rather clean a toilet than change their passwords.
  • The average organizational cost of data breaches in the U.S. was $5.8 million, the highest in the world.
  • Eighty percent of data breaches could have been eliminated with the use of two-factor authentication.
  • “Public organizations” were the third-highest industry sector attacked in 2013, behind “professional services” and “nontraditional services.”

Check out the rest of the Symantec’s findings below. And change your password!

2014_08_Symantec (Courtesy: Symantec)
Greg Otto

Written by Greg Otto

Greg Otto is Editor-in-Chief of CyberScoop, overseeing all editorial content for the website. Greg has led cybersecurity coverage that has won various awards, including accolades from the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Society of Business Publication Editors. Prior to joining Scoop News Group, Greg worked for the Washington Business Journal, U.S. News & World Report and WTOP Radio. He has a degree in broadcast journalism from Temple University.

Latest Podcasts