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If Zuckerberg can get hacked, what hope is there for the rest of us?

Screenshots courtesy Ben Hall

Need to Know

If you’re still typing “qwerty” into your password field, you shouldn’t feel guilty (although you should change your password as soon as possible (seriously, we’ll wait)).

Recently, Mark Zuckerberg’s Twitter and Pinterest accounts were hacked, presumably using security credentials from a 2012 LinkedIn security breach. In all three instances, Zuckerberg’s password was “dadada”, belying either a father complex or a taste for Marcel Duchamp.

If one of the tech world’s most powerful figures can’t keep his social media secure, what hope do any of the rest of us have?

First of all, you should change your LinkedIn password – clearly the information from 2012’s hack is still floating around – along with anywhere else you used that password. But when you consider the myriad login accounts you’ve created in the last four years, many of which you’ve likely long forgotten, chances are good that you’re going to miss something.

And you already know that you should change your passwords at least once a year, and that they should be different from site to site. We also know that we should be flossing everyday, and yet… it never quite works out that way.

Thankfully, the alphanumeric password might not be long for this world.

Biometric passwords will likely form the first wave of replacements. The iPhone already has fingerprint detection, but stranger iterations are on the horizon. “Brainprints” are currently being studied at Binghamton University where synaptic responses to 27 different images can identify a person with 100% accuracy. And German researchers are studying skull echoes – the unique ways sound bounces around a person’s skull – as a security precaution.

Amazon reportedly wants to use smiling selfies to replace passwords, and Google is planning to introduce trust scores to replace traditional passwords on Android devices.

Of course, it’s only a matter of time before hackers have figured out a way to mimic Zuck’s skull sounds. In the meanwhile, you should change your passwords.

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