Friday, January 3, 2014

Infographic: How Criminals Guess Your PIN

Infographic: How Criminals Guess Your PIN
by Gina Smith – Forget the security issues surrounding the ecosystem surrounding the nascent epayment economy for a minute. There’s a bigger problem – and it’s as obvious as your Personal Identification Number, or PIN.

Odds are you’ve used a four-digit PIN a lot. And that means a field day for criminals. Plain and simple, as the infographic below demonstrates, most folks don’t care or don’t bother to set up a four-digit PIN that’s difficult to guess after about 20 tries.

Try this on for size. According to a study of 3.4 million PINs by Data Genetics, nearly 27 percent of PINs could be guessed at correctly after just 20 tries. That isn’t just because popular pins like 1234 and 8888 reign – the most popular 1234 PIN accounted for 10 percent of the exposed PINs it studied. It’s also because, with four digits, there are only 10,000 possible combinations. Couple the two and you’ve got a situation that stands to expose an awful amount of people to a whole lot of felony theft — all over a PIN.

What to do? Check out the infographic below and make sure your PIN isn’t among the most popular. Never write yours down. Change it frequently. And don’t be lazy about it. PIN theft is booming, for sure. But it takes two – you and the PIN thief working in concert – to tango.

How Safe Is Your PIN?
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