Feeds

Users still slack about passwords: Trustwave

eHarmony analysis shows people just don’t care

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Trustwave's SpiderLabs has completed an analysis of the passwords dumped on the Internet in this month’s eHarmony breach, and reached the depressing conclusion that too few people really seem to care about password strength.

Having recovered 80 percent of the 1.5 million passwords in the dump file, the company says only 0.5 percent contained a “special character”, with 41 percent containing letters only and 57 percent a combination of letters and digits.

The high popularity of purely alphabetical passwords was, the blog post by Trustwave’s Mike Kelly noted, made worse by the weak protection used by eHarmony. Its password storage was case-insensitive, as well as being in an unsalted MD5 format, reducing the time needed to crack the passwords.

As it was, more than 1.2 million passwords were cracked in 72 hours, using three NVIDIA GPUs and the oclHashcat and John the Ripper cracking tools.

Along with various discussions of the types of base words popular in passwords (dog names outnumber female names, only a small number of passwords included the word “password”, and so on) the analysis found that 89 percent of the recovered passwords were between six and ten characters long.

The post adds a further criticism to eHarmony, noting that its password reset function spits out passwords that are only five characters long, which can be bruteforced “in less than ten seconds” on one GPU.

There is, however, a caveat to the analysis: Threatpost says that since no single password was found more than three times in the 1.2 million recovered passwords, “this brings into question the integrity of the original dump and the possibility of modification by the dumper”. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.