Mayukh Saha
Mayukh Saha
July 6, 2024 ·  3 min read

The 10 Most Commonly Used and Unsafe PIN Numbers (Is Yours On The List?)

You might not be surprised, but the most common PIN numbers are shockingly predictable. Recent research has unveiled the most frequently used PINs, and if you find yours on this list, it might be time to change it.

The Alarming State of Credit Fraud

Credit card and laptop
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Credit card fraud is an escalating issue, with the UK alone losing a staggering £556.3 million to credit, debit, and other payment card fraud in 2022. According to finder.com, the average defrauded account suffered a loss of £204, highlighting the serious financial impact on individuals. This widespread problem is exacerbated by the use of weak and easily guessable PIN numbers. By avoiding these common pitfalls, you can significantly reduce your risk of falling victim to such fraud.

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Why Weak PINs Are a Major Risk

Credit Cards
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Jake Moore, a global cybersecurity advisor at ESET, explains the dangers of using simple or easily guessable PINs. “Using easy-to-guess passcodes allows attackers to target people more easily,” he told MailOnline. Many individuals opt for PINs related to their personal information, such as birthdays or anniversaries, due to ease of memory. However, this practice puts them at significant risk. “People put themselves at risk by having weak passwords and PIN codes and often do not fully understand the threat until they are compromised,” Moore added. He recommends the use of password managers, which not only store but also generate strong, random passcodes, eliminating the reliance on easily remembered numbers.

The Most Commonly Used PIN Numbers

Paying with a credit card
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Based on a study conducted by the data website Information is Beautiful, which analyzed 3.4 million data points from various data breaches, the most commonly used PIN numbers have been identified. Here are the top offenders:
1234
1111
0000
1212
7777
1004
2000
4444
2222
6969
If your PIN is on this list, it is highly recommended that you change it immediately to something more secure.

The Least Commonly Used PIN Numbers

Credit card at an ATM
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Conversely, the study also identified the least common PIN numbers, which are significantly harder for attackers to guess. These include:
8557
8438
9539
7063
6827
0859
6793
0738
6835
8093
Using one of these PINs, or a similarly unique combination, can greatly enhance your security.

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The Importance of Password Hygiene

Pin pad
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In addition to weak PINs, easily guessable passwords are a major vulnerability. NordPass conducted a survey in 2021, revealing that “123456” topped the list of the most commonly used and weakest passwords. Jonas Karklys, CEO of NordPass, emphasized the importance of strong passwords: “Passwords are the gateway to our digital lives, and with us spending more and more time online, it’s becoming enormously important to take better care of our cybersecurity.”

The Worst Passwords to Use

Typing on a laptop
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Here are the top 25 worst passwords identified by NordPass:
123456
123456789
12345
qwerty
password
12345678
111111
123123
1234567890
1234567
qwerty123
000000
1q2w3e
aa12345678
abc123
password1
1234
qwertyuiop
123321
password123
1q2w3e4r5t
iloveyou
654321
666666
987654321
If your password is on this list, it’s crucial to change it to something more secure. Strong passwords typically include a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.

Taking Action to Protect Yourself

Digital Security
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In conclusion, while it might be convenient to use easily remembered PINs and passwords, doing so significantly increases your risk of becoming a victim of cybercrime. Utilizing password managers, creating complex and unique PINs, and maintaining good password hygiene are essential steps in safeguarding your financial and personal information. Don’t wait until it’s too late—take action now to protect yourself from fraud.

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