Predictability of Your PIN Code

Taking advantage of holiday sales might mean more trips to the bank and frequent use of your debit card. Unfortunately, the more you use your bank card the higher your risk of vulnerability to fraud and identity theft. Have you ever wondered how easy it might be for someone to crack your PIN code? Database analysts at DataGenetics broke down the trends in passwords from previously released tables and security breaches.

The most common four digit password was”1234″ which accounted for 10.7% of all passwords analyzed. Not surprisingly, the second and third most common passwords were “1111” and “0000”. Think those are too easy to guess? If you use numbers like your birth date, zip code, or street number, your code can easily be guessed if your wallet is lost or stolen along with your debit card and ID. It would be safer to use a relative’s birth date or a number unrelated to your personal information.

The 20 most commonly used password codes are fairly predictable.

The most uncommon codes from the data set were “8068” and “8093”. But we suggest a safer strategy for keeping your money protected- keep your debit card secured at home when it’s not needed and use credit cards during busy shopping seasons instead.This way any fraud using your identity can be disputed, leaving your hard earned cash safe and untouched. Fraud of any kind is a hassle and can be a danger to your finances, but it is much easier to dispute a charge on credit than decreased cash in your account when bills need to be paid. So enjoy the after-Christmas sales, and remember to practice safer shopping!

Web Traffic Study- Who’s Hogging the Data?

With America’s entertainment consumption shifting to online channels, it’s no surprise that Internet data usage has steadily surged over the years. The average monthly data usage on wired networks has doubled since 2011 from 25GB to 51GB. 
What might surprise you is the fact that during peak hours in North America (9:00PM to 12:00AM), just one channel is responsible for 33 percent of all downstream traffic.  Sandvine, a company specializing in web traffic management, confirms that Netflix streaming is the dominant force in this consumption. 
Netflix streaming is available on mobile devices.  Image Courtesy of Engadget.
To put things in perspective, Amazon’s service accounts for 1.8 percent and Hulu a mere 1.4 percent of traffic. Netflix’s successful growth is likely due to their expanded TV offerings with less emphasis on movies and their push to enable streaming access from a multitude of devices including gaming consoles, mobile phones, and tablets. Analysts predict that by 2014, 60% of all households will watch TV online. To capitalize on this shift, several start ups like Aero and Skitter TV are working to offer streaming television subscription services similar to Netflix.