Red-Haired Women Pick the Best Passwords, Bearded Men the Worst

Stolen website data highlight people’s lousy inventiveness

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The Kansas City Star / MCT via Getty Images

Hector Casanova illustration of man trying to remember all of his passwords.

Besides shedding light on our overwhelming sloppiness, data from recent security breaches at websites like Adobe and LinkedIn reveal some quirky patterns in how we choose our online passwords.

For instance, studies suggest that red-haired women usually choose the best passwords, whereas bearded men with unkempt locks pick the worst, reports the BBC. Men go for diversity, women for length, and blue is the most common color — not only because it’s the color of the sky and the sea, but also because it’s the color of Facebook, Twitter and Google.

Since targeted attacks are likely to comb through social media accounts, names of pets, streets and children should naturally be avoided at all times. However, we’re not less predictable when it comes to numbers: In a choice of 10,000 combinations for a four-digit pin, analysis point at 80% of our choices come from just a hundred different numbers.

In other words, there goes my blue1234Fido key-for-all…