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Weak Passwords Plague Real Estate Industry

Despite the reputational and financial costs associated with data breaches, “password” still tops the list of the top 10 passwords used by real estate professionals.   

There is a reason why websites require complex passwords: Having extra steps for protection like special symbols and numbers make it that much more difficult for hackers to easily break through. According to data from password manager NordPass, the top 10 passwords in the real estate industry are troublesome.

Without revealing company names, these are the top 10 passwords from NordPass and third-party research:

1.           password

2.           123456

3.           simon

4.           Company name2012

5.           aaron431

6.           twilight1

7.           Welcome1

8.           Company name*

9.           simon1

10.         Company name*

* This password is a company name or a variation of it.

Data from more than 15.6 million breaches was analyzed across 17 different industries. NordPass said only 29 percent of real estate professionals uses passwords that the company considers unique, and therefore much more difficult to crack.  

“Businesses and their employees have a duty to protect their customers’ data,” said Chad Hammond, Security Expert with NordPass, in a release. “A weak password of one employee could potentially jeopardize the whole company if an attacker used the breached password to gain access to sensitive data.”

There are several ways to educate users to protect themselves and company and customer data. Using a multi-factor authentication and single sign-on platform make it less likely for employees to use weak passwords or to write them down. A password manager provides a program for employees to securely store passwords. It’s also important that employees are educated and understand the risks of having poor passwords and poor password management. Personal and professional accounts must also remain separated.