FACT: Hackers Know Your Password in Less Than 6 Hours

Hackers have new hardware in their arsenal, allowing them to target the password you are using to protect your data, social networking sites, banking information, etc.,… and it will fail in less than 6 hours.

Hackers actually have a competition called “Crack Me If You Can” sponsored by Korelogic to see who can crack passwords the fastest. After all, hackers need to keep their skills sharp.

What is this super weapon? A computer of course… well not just one. It is a Linux based system consisting of 5 servers, with 25 AMD Radeon graphics cards working in unison, called a GPU cluster, running Virtual OpenCL cluster platform. On top of that, is running ocl-Hashcat Plus, a free password cracking suite primed for use with a GPU cluster. This is literally able to cycle through up to 350 billion guesses per second…


…a previously unprecedented number that can try every possible password in less than 6 hours, as well as crunching 44 or so other algorithms.

Founder / C.E.O. of Stricture Consulting Group, Mr. Jeremi Gosney, displayed the cluster machine at the recent Passwords^12 conference in Oslo, Norway.

Graphics cards are normally used for high end graphics for games like Crysis, Call Of Duty, World Of Warcraft, Crysis, etc. Hardcore gamers will typically put 2 or 3 graphics cards in their gaming tower so games play smoothly at maximum resolution for intense gameplay action.

Computer graphics that you and I enjoy are really nothing more than numbers to a computer. For graphics cards to put out extremely high end gaming graphics, internally they have to compute extreme amounts of math and numbers on the fly to render the images on the screen.

By taking 25 graphics cards, combining their impressive individual power into a pool of extreme number crunching capabilities, the system can brute force hack passwords like a hot knife through butter.

What are you to do?

#1.First of all, know that a 100% safe computer system or password does not exist. If a hacker wants in your account, it is just how fast he will get in. All you can do is make it as hard as possible, to slow them down. It is a never ending battle for both individual users like you and I, all the way up to governments. In fact, cyber attacks on government networks are up 680 percent in the past 5 years. If you think that’s bad, according to Reuters, 44 Million hacking attempts have been made against Israeli government websites.

#2. Be proactive in your security and actually try to make a serious password. Surprisingly, most people leave the door wide open for hackers, so much so that Blackberry maker RIM is cracking down banning some passwords. Here, you can see the list of 106 banned passwords. Are you guilty of using one on that list? Long passwords aren’t enough. It is essential that you don’t use names, common phrases, words, or a randomly generated text string. Passwords should be at least 13-20 characters long. An excellent reference to help you create a password masterpiece is the Carnegie Melon University Guidelines For Password Management.

What do you think? I would love your thoughts and comments.

You can Email me directly at drtechblog@gmail.com and I will reply to as many of your messages as possible, maybe using some questions and answers in a future post.

J. D. Redmond  ~ “Dr. Tech” ~ http://www.DrTech.co

Jacques Redmond

About Jacques Redmond

I'm an I.T. Security Professional, Technology Analyst, Consultant, & Tech Writer Protecting You From Viruses, Malware, Trojans, Hackers, and other Cyber Threats. I enjoy taking complicated subjects, and putting them in a way that's easy for everyone to understand. My site INFORMATIONWARFARE.US gives free advice to combat threats to your system.