How to get a Hotmail password (I): Trying basic passwords

Most people don’t have the capability to remember good passwords. A good password has, at least, eight characters and contains a mixture of letters in upper and lowercase, numbers and punctuation signs. But it is hard to remember all of this, so usually most of us use a really simple password which can be guessed in a few tries.

Here’s a list of the most common methods people use to choose a password:

  • birthdate
  • favourite sports team
  • name of some relative (girlfriend, son,…)
  • name of the pet
  • favourite movie
  • favourite band

OK, I think you can get the idea. This simple scheme which is used in a lot of movies to guess someone’s password works many times in reality, too. Luckily, it’s more difficult nowadays to use this kind of information to guess the password, as most webbased email providers block the account for a predefined time when there has been too many failed attempts to login (sometimes with three failed attempts the account is blocked).

So, if your password is any of this list or something similar which can be realted to you, you should be changing it for something more complicated or you risk someone guessing it. No, adding numbers to that simple password doesn’t really add too much to security.