Feeds

L337 crackrz use dumb passwords too

Haxxors hope 'hack' stops them from being hacked

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Black hats are just as blithe about the passwords they use as the rest of the world, according to a bit of research by security outfit Avast.

The anti-virus company's Antonín Hýža, writes here that after he'd built a dictionary of hacked hackers' passwords, the most common password was “hack”.

Hýža says his work began because he had the job of decoding a PHP shell without the key. Rather than try to brute force the shell, he figured that building a dictionary of hackers' passwords would accelerate the process. So he raided the company's samples of backdoors, bots and shells, some of which “are protected with a password encoded in MD5, SHA1 or in plain text”.

With 40,000 samples in hand, Hýža said, “nearly 2,000 were unique and 1,255 of those were in plain text”. Short passwords hashed in MD5 were easy to crack, and yielded another 348 samples, and the total is what he analysed to build his dictionary. Here's some other highlights:

  • 59 per cent of passwords used only characters – no numbers or special symbols
  • Only six per cent included non-alphanumeric character;
  • Many of the samples in the analysis used default passwords like r57, c99, password or yourpass.

Hýža says the dictionary also yielded a couple of handy character sets for when he had to apply brute force to a password: acdehiklmnorstu01234579!-.@_ and acdehiklmnorstubgpxyw0123456789!-.@_#$+*{space} – and interestingly, when he had to resort to brute force, in all cases the passwords were six characters or fewer.

Perhaps Vulture South's favourite example of passwords Hýža found was lol dont try cracking 12 char+ – which was stored in plain text. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
George Clooney, WikiLeaks' lawyer wife hand out burner phones to wedding guests
Day 4: 'News'-papers STILL rammed with Clooney nuptials
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
PEAK IPV4? Global IPv6 traffic is growing, DDoS dying, says Akamai
First time the cache network has seen drop in use of 32-bit-wide IP addresses
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.