Cybersecurity
Article

This Chart Shows How Long It Would Take a Computer to Hack Your Exact Password

by
World Economic Forum
March 25, 2022
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Summary

A password of eight standard letters contains 209 billion possible combinations, but a computer is able to calculate this instantly. Adding one upper case letter to a password dramatically alters a computer's potential to crack a password, extending it to 22 minutes. Having a long mix of upper and lower case letters, symbols and numbers is the best way make your password more secure. A 12-character password containing at least one upper case letter, one symbol and one number would take 34,000 years for a computer to crack.

This Chart Shows How Long It Would Take a Computer to Hack Your Exact Password

Password, 123456, qwerty - while passwords which appear on the list of the most common passwords should definitely be retired from use, even a more unique password can be easy to crack if a computer program is tasked with systematically breaking it.

As seen in data by website Security.org, adding even one upper case letter to a password can already dramatically alter its potential. In the case of an eight-character password, it can now be broken in 22 minutes instead of instantaneously in one second – an increase of more than 1000 percent.

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World Economic Forum
World Economic Forum

The World Economic Forum is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation. The Forum engages the foremost political, business, cultural and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. It was established in 1971 as a not-for-profit foundation and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. It is independent, impartial and not tied to any special interests. The Forum strives in all its efforts to demonstrate entrepreneurship in the global public interest while upholding the highest standards of governance. Moral and intellectual integrity is at the heart of everything it does.

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