10 iPhone Passcodes to Avoid

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Attention iPhone users: You're not fooling anyone if you're using 1234, 0000, 2580, 1111, 5555, 5683, 0852, 2222, 1212, 1998 as your smartphone passcode.

Those are the 10 most common and predictable iPhone passcodes used, according to the developer of a free iOS app called Big Brother Camera Security that snaps pictures of anyone using your iPhone 4 iPod Touch 4 without your permission.

The developer, Daniel Amitay, wrote that he collected the info by adding some code to record user passcodes (keeping them anonymous). He surveyed more than 200,000 passcodes.

"Formulaic passwords are never a good idea, yet 15% of all passcode sets were represented by only 10 different passcodes (out of a possible 10,000)," Amitay writes. "The implication? A thief (or just a prankster) could safely try 10 different passcodes on your iPhone without initiating the data wipe. With a 15% success rate, about 1 in 7 iPhones would easily unlock--even more if the intruder knows the users' years of birth, relationship status, etc."

RESEARCH: Making weak passwords strong with CAPTCHAs plus an algorithm

As has been seen in past studies of common passwords, this latest list includes examples of numbers in order, four of the same number, years (such as 1998) and feebly hidden messages (i.e. 5683, the numerical version of LOVE).

Even if you choose a less obvious passcode, security dangers loom for iPhone users: A Russian firm called ElcomSoft last month claimed that it had cracked Apple iOS 4 hardware encryption and forwarded information on this to law enforcement, government and other such outfits.

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Read more about anti-malware in Network World's Anti-malware section.

This story, "10 iPhone Passcodes to Avoid" was originally published by Network World.

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