There are so many combinations for a password. You might be as curious as me about how hackers crack the passwords. This post is going to show you some techniques used to hack passwords.
First of all, this post doesn’t mean to teach you how to crack someone else’s password. We aim to familiarize you with the common methods of hacking passwords and make your passwords harder to crack. Secondly, no protection can completely ensure your data security. Countless examples have proved that security is relative. But security precautions do reduce the risks of being hacked.
Here are some common ways to crack passwords.
Technique 1: Dictionary attack
It is a very common and effective method that doesn’t require high technologies. To put it simply, the hacker tries a list of combinations to log into your account. This sounds like what I do when I forget the password of my suitcase. It takes me a long time to find the correct password because I have to manually enter the password. But hackers can do it much faster than me because they’ve got some techniques to help them. For example, a hacker will design a program to enter the list of passwords until it unlocks your account.
How does a hacker know that your password will be one on the list? That list is what a hacker needs to create before starting hacking. Generally, a hacker will do research on the target to determine the possible range of the password. The possible combinations will be stored in a word processing file, which is usually a TXT file. This TXT file is the dictionary that contains the possible passwords. Then, the hacker will use a program to try the password in the dictionary one by one.
Here comes another question. What if the password of the target is not in the dictionary? Of course, it is possible. But hackers often perform attacks to a large number of users. As long as some users’ passwords are in the dictionary, the hacker can steal money from them and get considerable revenue.
So, you need to use passwords that are more complex. There is an annual list of the world’s most common passwords released by SplashData. Among them, 123456 has been ranked first from 2013 to 2018. If your passwords are among these widely used passwords, your accounts are really vulnerable to hackers. You’d better change them immediately.
Technique 2: Social engineering
This is another effective way of password hacking. Although it seems like a complex method, the way it works is very simple. For example, suppose a hacker wants to steal money from your PayPal account which is hard to hack. Then, the hacker tries to crack your passwords of other accounts that are relatively easy to hack. If you are using the same password for your PayPal account and some other accounts, your PayPal account will be stolen once other accounts that use the same password get hacked.
Hackers will first attack some small websites to get a large number of accounts and passwords. Then, they will use these accounts and passwords to log in on big websites. In this way, they will manage to log in to many accounts on these websites. This method is usually effective because many people set the same password for different accounts only for convenience.
Here we suggest everyone set separate passwords for different accounts, especially for those accounts that are related to your property. Otherwise, you would be an easy target for social engineering attackers.
Technique 3: Exploit Vulnerabilities
The above two methods are very simple when compared with technique 3. To crack your passwords by exploiting vulnerabilities, the hacker needs relative skills.
For example, a variety of encryption technologies can be used by our WiFi. Generally, there are five encryption technologies for WiFi. Currently, the top 2 common encryption technologies are WPA or WPA2. While WEP is commonly used a long time ago. This encryption technology is very insecure and can be easily cracked now. So, no WiFi is still using it.
Note: This has nothing to do with the complexity of the WiFi password you set. No matter how complex the password is, it doesn’t take a long time to crack the WiFi that uses WEP as long as the hacker captures enough packets to crack the WiFi.
In addition to the methods mentioned above, there are still many other techniques can help hackers crack your passwords. You should raise your awareness while you are online.
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The spying eyes on the Internet can monitor your online activities. From this, they can get a lot of your information. Thus, we recommend you to always connect the Internet via a VPN. Among various VPN services on the market, RitaVPN stands out for its high-level encryption and high-quality service.