Balboa Provides an All-Too Punchy Password


A recent analysis of leaked password data has revealed a surprising punch to the gut that movie titles make up a lot of personal password choices, and the most common has spawned more rounds of use on the list than its cinematic counterpart has had in the ring.

Knockout Passwords

Specops sprawled over 800 million breached passwords to highlight which big-screen hits were the most dominant at the password box office. Punching way above all of the other password variations on breached lists was Sylvester Stallone’s sports drama hit Rocky.

The kind-hearted Italian-American from the working class who gets his shot to fight out of the gutter may be a million to one shot story, but it sure makes its impact on people’s passwords of choice. Originally released in 1976, Rocky spawned a franchise that dominated the 80s, was knocked out cold in the early 90s and came back for a successful rematch in the 2000s and has such an impact that its use in passwords has reached near enough 96,000 times.

Favourites for Raiders and Cybercriminals

Not far behind this knockout password choice was the 1991 fantasy film Hook, a swashbuckling Peter Pan grew up adventure directed by Steven Spielberg and featuring Robin Williams, Dustin Hoffman and Julia Roberts, which didn’t rate as well at the box office in comparison to its use as a password in 75,000 instances.

Third at the breach office with an estimated 50,000 uses is the science fiction classic The Matrix, 1999s Keanu Reeves vehicle which funnily enough showcases the leading man as a computer programmer and cybercriminal.

Not So Secret Identities

If you think choosing movie titles and franchises are limited to these few instances then you would be in for a surprise, as many more instantly recognisable screen icons joined the list in prime spots for password use. Superheroes usually like to keep their identities secret, but if Batman, Superman, Spider-Man, Iron Man and the X-Men used their alter egos as their passwords like the many individuals who placed fourth, sixth, eleventh, thirteenth and fourteenth on the list, they wouldn’t be keeping their secrets for too long.

Even more surprising between all of these iconic superheroes is the inclusion of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 psychological horror masterpiece Psycho, cutting in at number 5 in the most utilised. Mother would be proud.

Not to be excluded, a fair share of children’s movies also matched into the proceedings with the number 12 spot falling into variations from Frozen and seemingly everyone’s favourite ogre Shrek finding itself at 16. Romance however may be dead when it comes to passwords as there was no trace of any. Whilst James Cameron is the king of the world and his movie is the number one in the world, his Titanic endeavour to become a password fell short at 19.

Not Good Returns

Whilst this list and comments are all in good humour, the risks associated with these figures of password use is showcasing a negative impact on the state of weak passwords when it comes to cybersecurity risks.

Repetitive passwords that showcase on a breached passwords list leads to enterprise emails, apps, servers and devices becoming very vulnerable to unauthorised access and cyberattacks. The identity management needs for multi-factor authorisation in securing information available online and strict eight-character minimum password length goes a long way in ensuring these trends in password use don’t lead to your password joining the list.

For more information on any upcoming cybersecurity conference and identity management event, check out the upcoming events from Whitehall Media