The covert, and possibly illegal, research of a 20 year-old NYU economics student has shown just how susceptible iPhone users are to having their 4-digit pass codes unlocked. The student, Daniel Amitay, created an alternative security application that released an update to record the user-enter pass codes anonymously into a database. The application has since been banned, but the results of 204,508 pass codes were published last week, with some surprising trends.
The top 10 most common pass codes for the iPhone are, unsurprisingly, 1234, 0000, 2580, 0852, 1111, 5555, 2222, 5683, 1212, and 1958.
Although four-digit pass codes offer up to 10,000 combinations, it is apparent that humans are still attracted to the simplest solutions. Single-digit series are the most popular, as seen in the 1111, 2222 and 0000 codes. For all the romantic iPhone users, 5683 is the numerical presentation of the word “love.” User-friendly pass codes like 2580, the representation of ‘asdf’ on a QWERTY keyboard, are not secure either. Birth years, graduation years and birth date combinations are all uncannily popular; Amitay’s reports showed years from 1990 to 2000 in the top 50 combinations and 1980 to 89 in the top 100. If your iPhone pass code resembles any of these popular combinations, you may want to consider changing it to something a little less obvious.