4 in 5 breaches caused by compromised passwords as password reuse spikes

May 16, 2023  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources, ,

Approximately a 3-minute read

Key takeaways: 

  • The best way to stay cybersafe is to make sure you aren’t reusing or recycling passwords.
  • U-M has guidelines for password security that you should be aware of.
  • A password manager and other resources are also available to help you stay safe while online.

Passwords are like jokes: reuse them too often and they lose their edge. Ask a comedian and they’ll tell you that rewriting material is a must to ensure comedic integrity and longevity. Ask a professional hacker for tips to protect your accounts’ integrity and longevity, and they’ll sing a similar tune.

Passwords are reused 64% of the time. A staggering 81% of all hacking-related breaches are caused by compromised passwords. Even Google searches for “reuse password” surged 85% since July 2022, the highest search volume in over a year.

But, just as comedians who recycle jokes risk career vulnerability, using the same password across multiple accounts puts those accounts in jeopardy. In fact, password reuse is dangerous and discouraged… even when it reveals that our passwords are teeming with Taylor Swift references.

Here’s how it works: a website storing your personal information is breached. The attacker easily steals your username and password. They feed your information into a program that attempts to log into myriad websites you’ve registered with. Minutes later, they’re able to access your sensitive information, like bank accounts, family pictures, etc.

According to Information Assurance, here are quick steps you can take now to protect your passwords.

Password Pro Tips

Ask yourself the questions below to see if you need to change your password. Balance your answers with the need to have a password that you can remember without having to write it down.

  • Have you traveled abroad or are planning to?

Play your part: keep Michigan Medicine and yourself cybersafe!

Other important resources

Stay current with Information Assurance Education and Awareness: