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Word for Word: Hacking and coughing up questionable computer passwords

Gawker got hacked last weekend. A group of hackers stole and posted the e-mails and passwords of more than a million registered users of Gawker company sites like Gawker, Gizmodo and Jezebel.

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The expected and sensible response was a collective refresher on Internet security tips. All of them could've been boiled down to just one word. Care.

The breach coughed up a strangely fascinating list of the sites' 25 most popular passwords. Gracious. What do they say about who we are at this moment in time?

They say we can't remember. No. That's not right. They say we can't be bothered. They say: Movies from the '80s? Inflated egos? Is baseball, not football, still the national pastime? Surely not. And what on earth to make of the fact that the most popular password that can't be chalked up to blank-faced indifference is . . . monkey? Also: Cheese?

Some words that come to mind looking at this list for any length of time:

Easy. Lazy.


Michael Kruse, Times staff writer

1. 123456

2. password

3. 12345678

4. qwerty

5. abc123

6. 12345

7. monkey

8. 111111

9. consumer

10. letmein

11. 1234

12. dragon

13. trustno1

14. baseball

15. gizmodo

16. whatever

17. superman

18. 1234567

19. sunshine

20. iloveyou

21. f***you

22. starwars

23. shadow

24. princess

25. cheese

Word for Word is an occasional feature excerpting passages of interest from books, magazines, websites and other sources. The text may be edited for space, but the original spelling, grammar and punctuation are unchanged.

Word for Word: Hacking and coughing up questionable computer passwords 12/18/10 [Last modified: Saturday, December 18, 2010 3:31am]
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