If password management isn’t something you’re taking seriously, there’s never been a better time to start. With so many password manager options and so much information available, it’s never been easier to find the right password manager and learn why it’s so important to have one. In the digital age, passwords are just one form of authentication, but they’re the most widely-used and familiar form. That’s why it’s so important to protect them, especially when you learn about some of the startling password statistics we’ll cover in this article.
It’s time to start taking our passwords seriously, and that starts with storing and managing them correctly with a business or personal password manager. Enterprise password management solutions are more affordable than ever and are the first line of defense your business has against data breaches.
Let’s take a look at six reasons why password management is essential for businesses in the digital age.
1. Most Data Breaches Occur Due To Compromised Passwords
We all remember the Target breach of 2013, the Capital One breaches of recent years, and other cyberattacks. These attacks had massive consequences, not limited to just the millions in settlement money that each company was forced to pay to its customers. A data breach does so much more than just cost a company money—it can also cost its reputation. The startling thing about data breaches is that around 80% of them occur due to compromised passwords!
The largest data breach to date, COMB, was first discovered on February 2nd of this year when around 3.2 billion unique password/email combinations were leaked on a popular hacker forum. That’s roughly 70% of the internet users’ passwords across the globe. Passwords were collected from sites like LinkedIn, NetFlix, and more.
What does this tell us? It tells us that we’re not taking our most vulnerable and most significant cybersecurity tool seriously enough. A data breach can cost a company millions, and the cost is often enough to bankrupt a small business.
2. A Data Breach Can Bankrupt A Business
With the average cost of a data breach sitting at somewhere around $150 per record, it’s time to look at what it truly costs a business to have a data breach. Not only will your company have to pay for damages, but you’ll also have to upgrade your cybersecurity measures, which can often involve an outside firm that charges a premium. $150 per record is steep, even if you’re only dealing with a few hundred. Let’s say around 750 records are compromised, and you’re forced to pay full-price for the damages. That’s $112,500.
Many small businesses either don’t have the resources or don’t care to acquire the resources to better secure passwords/their general cybersecurity infrastructure, and this is a huge mistake. All it can take is one data breach to ruin your company’s financial future, and, potentially, your reputation.
3. Identity Theft Is A Real Threat
Identity theft is a threat in the US and across the globe, with an estimated nine million stolen identities in the US alone annually. Identity theft can occur when a hacker gets ahold of personal information like bank account numbers, social security numbers, full legal names, telephone numbers, addresses, and more. The hacker will then pose as the person they’ve hacked, often taking out loans, funneling money, or opening up lines of credit in that person’s name.
The cost of identity theft is often in the thousands, and, depending on the damage, can bankrupt a person or a business. Imagine if a hacker stole your identity as the CEO of your company, ran up a bunch of debt, and destroyed your reputation as a business owner.
4. Too Many People Don’t Take Passwords Seriously
The sad fact is that well over half of all internet users don’t take their passwords seriously enough. In fact, most people reuse a password multiple times, even at work. This can put not only their personal information at risk but also the business’s private data.
The problem is that most people don’t understand how simultaneously powerful and fragile their passwords are. A good password can act as a stalwart defense against a hacker, but a poor recycled password can be a quick entry into a private account. It’s time to start taking passwords seriously and using a password manager to safely manage and store our passwords for both business and personal use.
5. Digital Assets Are Becoming More Popular
Bitcoin and other digital assets have become wildly popular in the last decade, with Bitcoin itself spiking to well over $50,000 per coin just this year alone. What does this mean? It means that more and more people are beginning to look to cryptocurrencies and digital assets as a means of investment, but the problem is that these assets are stored online. That means passwords are needed to access them.
With billions in digital assets, the crypto community has had its fair share of attacks. Good password habits are more important than ever, as such a large pool of money is sure to attract unwanted attention. If you’re a crypto holder, you can’t afford to use poor passwords!
6. Password Management Is Easier Than You Might Think
Password management, even for businesses, can be as simple as buying a password manager like Keeper and downloading it to the company computers. It’s easy to use, secure and offers cloud storage and protection for all of your passwords and even sensitive documents. When many people and businesses think of password management, it’s safe to assume they think of some complex process—otherwise, more people might be using these efficient, effective tools.
A password manager is one of the most affordable and effective ways to both secure your company passwords and help your employees form better password habits. Don’t underestimate the power of a good password!