A team of hackers has managed to crack more than 14,800 supposedly random hashed (encrypted) passwords -90% from a list of 16,449. This act was part of a hacking experiment for a technology website Ars Technica.

So, you think you have a strong password?

The success rate for each hacker ranged from 62% to 90%, and the hacker who cracked 90% of hashed passwords did so in less than an hour using a computer cluster. The hackers also managed to crack 16-character passwords including ‘Philippians4:6-7’,  ‘Qbesancon321′,’qeadzcwrsfxv1331’, ‘DG091101%’.

Talk to your IT support company to ensure that your servers are fully protected and secure.

Made you think, didn’t it? Heck, some of my passwords are easier than the cracked ones! Given, cracking hash codes may not be that easy if the server is properly secured and the hackers should not be able to access the database with all the hashes in the first place. Choosing a secure password by itself is not enough if your server is not protected properly.

So, what about the password strength-meters?

Noticed how your password selection is being criticized while setting up or changing account credentials on cloud-based resources, such as Facebook, Google, and such? Have you ever thought to yourself – do these meters actually work? Do people choose stronger passwords? A team of scientists has concluded that the meters do work when they’re set up correctly.

Civil Hackaton, anyone?

On Saturday and Sunday, The LAB Miami will host the first-annual Hack for Change: Miami as part of the National Day of Civic Hacking. The event endeavors to bring together citizens in the spirit of collaboration to develop new technological solutions for some our country’s oldest problems. Or, as the national website puts it, “to do what is most quintessentially American: roll up our sleeves, get involved, and work together to improve our society.”

Read More: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/the-starting-gate/2013/05/hack-for-change-miami-where-art-and-tech-meet-big-government-data.html