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Gen Z Passwords More Likely to Practice Poor Password Hygiene, Research Shows

Password hygiene is a really key aspect to enjoying a reasonable level of safety online, but just because something is ideal for safety doesn’t mean that people are going to take part in it. While the general assumption would be that people of older generations such as baby boomers and Gen X would be the worst offenders when it comes to not taking proper care of password hygiene and the like, a survey conducted by BeyondIdentity that asked questions of 1,000 American citizens revealed that Gen Z are actually the least careful about the passwords that they end up keeping.

About 25% of Gen Z respondents said that they reused passwords for multiple services which in many ways is a cardinal sin when it comes to password hygiene. Twenty percent of all respondents said that they only changed their passwords once a year, but this went up to 30% for Gen Z respondents so it’s quite clear that the members of this generation don’t really take all that much care of their passwords and are therefore at risk of not remaining as safe as they need to be online.

One reason why Gen Z respondents don’t really care about the fact that their passwords are really insecure might be apathy on their part, but it might also have to do with the fact that most of the members of this generation are actually quite young.

That said, this doesn’t mean that people will use insecure passwords on social media platform. Oftentimes people will have one password in particular that they would keep as secure as they possibly can, and for about 40% of respondents this turned out to be their Facebook password because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up enabling them to log in to a variety of other services and applications online. Hence, if their Facebook password gets breached, they might suffer from security breaches across their numerous accounts which is why they tend to place more emphasis on keeping this particular password up to date.

One of the most disturbing trends that was uncovered in this survey had to do with how frequently people shared their passwords with others. This might just be the worst thing that you can do in terms of maintaining security on the internet, but regardless around 60% of people shared their passwords with either their spouses or their significant others, and over 40% would be willing to give it to their parents. This indicates a very low level of awareness of what proper password hygiene is, so more effort needs to be put into disseminating this information to a large enough group of people.

Read next: Password Statistics Show Dire State of Online Security (infographic)

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