Both business and personal users need to 'drop passwords altogether' and move to other technology to protect private information from hackers, a cybersecurity expert has said.
Passwords are 'becoming increasingly insecure' and 'easily hacked', according to Grahame Williams, Identity and Access Management Director at defence firm Thales.
He called on the industry to move to other forms of log-in such as multi-factor authentication (MFA) - where users must provide an additional layer of identification to log in - or biometrics such as face or fingerprint scans to improve the general safety of personal and business data.
Williams said: 'Research has come out in the last few days showing the number of CEOs who are still using '12356' as their password is actually quite comical - the assumption is that we've moved away from that but actually the data really isn't supporting that.
'We know that people are using these ridiculously easy passwords, but the most alarming fact is that they're not actually just using them for one thing, they use that password over and over again.
'So, if somebody gets access to one of your passwords they get access to your crown jewels.
'With everyone working from home, with COVID and people going online for the consumption of everything, the threat landscape is getting worse and worse, and there are some seriously unscrupulous people out there.
'So, it really is in everyone's interest to take it seriously and make sure that we put as many hurdles up as we can.'