Red alert: 10 billion passwords are in the wild, how to protect yourself?


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9,948,575,739 unique passwords, that’s what the file “rockyou2024.txt” found by researchers contains VSybernews. A rather incredible figure recovered over the last twenty years via multiple leaks. They come from 4000 different databases.

What are you risking?

The experts thus emphasize: “The RockYou2024 leak is a compilation of real passwords used by individuals around the world. Revealing this many passwords to malicious actors significantly increases the risk of brute force attacks.”.

In plain English, this means that hackers who get their hands on this file could test different passwords to unlock an account. This quest is not done manually, but through an automation of the process that allows millions of passwords to be tested in no time.

“Furthermore, combined with other databases leaked on hacker forums and marketplaces, which contain, for example, user email addresses and other identifying information, RockYou2024 may contribute to a cascade of data breaches, financial fraud and identity theft.”warn experts.

How to protect yourself?

Faced with this now very real risk, you are not helpless. You can in particular test your email address in the database HaveIBeenPwned to see if your credentials have been compromised. Cybernews also offers its own tool that you can consult here.

If your passwords have been leaked, you should change them immediately. You should make sure to choose a sufficiently complex and long formulation that includes lowercase letters, uppercase letters, numbers, and special characters. To obtain a secure password, you can also use a generator. This is good news, because we have put together a guide that lists the best offers on the market in 2024.

The use of multi-factor authentication, now offered on many services, is also an additional guarantee of security. Although it is not infallible, it does indeed considerably complicate the task of cybercriminals. Were you aware that so many passwords were accessible? Tell us in the comments.

What you must remember :

  • A file containing 10 billion passwords has been leaked. It includes data collected over the last twenty years.
  • Cybercriminals could take advantage of this by carrying out brute force attacks.
  • It is important to adopt the right reflexes when faced with this very real danger.

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