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2 million Facebook, Twitter, Google passwords pilfered

| Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013, 8:57 p.m.

BOSTON — Security experts have uncovered a trove of about 2 million stolen passwords to websites including Facebook, Google, Twitter and Yahoo from Internet users across the globe.

Researchers with Trustwave's SpiderLabs said they discovered the credentials while investigating a server in the Netherlands that cyber criminals use to control a network of compromised computers known as the “Pony botnet.”

The company told Reuters on Wednesday that it has reported its findings to the largest of more than 90,000 websites and Internet service providers whose customers' credentials it had found on the server.

An analysis posted on the SpiderLabs blog showed that the most-common password in the set was “123456,” which was used in nearly 16,000 accounts. Other commonly used credentials included “password,” “admin,” “123” and “1.”

Graham Cluley, an independent security expert, said it is extremely common for people to use such simple passwords and also re-use them on multiple accounts, even though they are extremely easy to crack.

“People are using very dumb passwords. They are totally useless,” he said.

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