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AI Password Cracking: What to Know & How to Stay Safe

September 13, 20236 min read

Cybersecurity

Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash  

Cybercriminals are constantly developing increasingly sophisticated password-cracking/hacking methods. It is now possible to apply AI to crack simple passwords without fuss. You can find proof in emerging AI solutions like PassGAN, which cracked over half of the common passwords fed to its system in under 60 seconds. The staggering developments in AI password cracking undoubtedly raise newfound security concerns for many IT teams and company decision-makers. 

Highly hackable passwords essentially leave the proverbial door open for major system breaches within your organizational network. These often result in catastrophic consequences for sensitive data and company assets, and not forgetting the far-reaching dangers of identity theft.  

Here are five critical insights about the rapidly evolving developments of AI password cracking:

  • Your password is 100% crackable by AI as long as it has been breached or leaked.

  • Advanced AI password-cracking tools can bypass 81% of common passwords within a month, and most of those coded strings within a day. 

  • Top AI password cracking enables perpetrators to hide behind a veil of secrecy while they automate their breaching activities, making them more elusive than ever. 

  • AI password cracking tools advance their capabilities with breached password data. So, it is vital for your team to follow the latest cybersecurity practices for optimal protection.  

  • Your team can significantly reduce the risk of AI password cracking by optimizing regular password hygiene practices. 

Our guide shares how AI password cracking works, other cybersecurity threats to your company, and the best practices in password hygiene for preventing these highlighted issues.  

Table of Contents

  1. Can AI Be Used to Crack Passwords?
  2. Other Threats to Consider Beyond AI Password Cracking
  3. How to Protect Your Passwords: 5 Critical Tips

Can AI Be Used to Crack Passwords?

Modern cybercriminals may use emerging AI solutions like PassGAN to crack the most common passwords with unmatched ease. These advanced password crackers operate differently from conventional password-guessing tools based on human-generated rules. 

Instead, these hacking tools function Like AI chatbots capable of improving their performances based on machine learning. Advanced password-cracking software like PassGAN "learn passwords" through artificial neural networks that teach computers to process data in a way similar to the human brain. Specifically, PassGAN distinguishes the patterns between fake passwords (fed from data sets) and actual breached passwords to anticipate and crack future passwords. In other words, AI password cracking functions adaptively and can pose a significant threat to unprepared security systems. 

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Other Threats to Consider Beyond AI Password Cracking

AI password cracking joins a long list of cybersecurity threats that continues to expand with more advanced technical capabilities. The following are some of the most prevalent threats to look out for when planning your company’s cybersecurity protection and password management.

Phishing

Phishing refers to the social engineering method of deceiving users often by assuming a false identity that instills trust. Disguised attackers then leverage trusted user interactions to steal private information and credentials. 

The malicious act of phishing remains the most common form of cybercrime and is expected to affect 33 million online records in 2023 with attacks occurring every 11 seconds. 

Brute Force Attacks

As the term might suggest, brute force attacks refer to the continuous bombardment of multiple passwords via trial and error until the security system finds a match. Brute force attackers usually input various combinations of commonly used passwords to increase the chances of infiltrating an account or network. Some attackers may rely on advanced scripts and bots for submitting multiple password attempts at a rapid rate.

Dictionary Attacks

Similar to brute force attacks, however, attackers take a more methodical approach by narrowing password attempts based on terms associated with the user. For instance, cybercriminals may include the words and characters found in a user’s email address or the name of their pet (possibly inferred from their social media profiles). 

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How to Protect Your Passwords: 5 Critical Steps

Reliable password hygiene routines can help safeguard your precious company network and account against evolving AI tools. We look at five effective measures that you can implement to keep AI password cracking at bay. 

Stick With Strong Passwords

Strong passwords make it extremely difficult for AI to guess their combination. Lengthy password strings that contain at least 15 characters and two instances of alphabets (including upper and lower case alphabets) numbers, and symbols like exclamation marks are effective because they keep AI guessing due to their complexity and unpredictability. 

Don't Reuse Passwords Across Accounts

The most complex passwords are ineffective (and risky) if they’ve been stored in a breached database. Industry research shows that 80% of confirmed data breaches result from stolen, weak, or reused passwords. Advanced AI software can leverage leaked information to crack your password code in seconds through brute force attacks. Perhaps the worst part about reusing passwords across multiple accounts is that a single cyber breach could result in unauthorized access to every corner of your managed networks.  

Change Passwords Frequently

Changing your company account passwords regularly lowers the risks of an AI security breach by keeping AI constantly guessing. TeamPassword’s secure password generator helps you create effective new passwords in a click without worrying about the effectiveness of your combinations. 

Enable Two-Factor Authentication 

Governmental agencies, banks, and enterprises trust two-factor authentication for optimized cybersecurity. Setting up the technology strengthens your passwords with an additional layer of protection against threats like AI password cracking since perpetrators must provide the unique one-time password (OTP) sent to a user’s registered devices and email, on top of cracking a password. 

Use a Password Manager Tool

A quality password manager tool enables your company to store, share, and replace strong passwords frictionlessly while preventing the risks of getting locked out. 

TeamPassword’s leading features include group sharing for seamlessly managing multiple passwords across various departments and groups (and removing permissions when needed) and two-step verification synced to an authenticator for extra account protection. Plus, TeamPassword's password manager integrates with Google Sign-on, promoting safe collaborations and convenient access for all of your authorized account users.

Stop Hackers in Their Tracks With TeamPassword

As AI password cracking becomes more prevalent, organizations need robust password management solutions. TeamPassword provides a secure and convenient way to manage and safeguard your company's credentials. Sign up with TeamPassword today and protect your accounts from the most sophisticated attacks.

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