The largest password list ever collected has been released online

The largest password list ever collected has been released online

It's called RockYou21 and it's the largest "collection" of passwords ever leaked: it contains 8.4 billion credentials, saved in a 100 gigabyte heavy text file

(photo: Jens Büttner / picture alliance via Getty Images ) In recent days what is probably the largest password list ever collected online has appeared on a popular hacker forum. In fact, a user uploaded a 100 gigabyte text file that contained 8.4 billion passwords, presumed already the result of old breaches, but now grouped into a single, gigantic, list.

According to the post by the author, reported by CyberNews, all passwords included in the file have 6 to 20 characters, with non-Ascii characters and whitespace removed. The same user had written that his collection contained 82 billion passwords, but the actual number turned out to be almost ten times smaller, with 8,459,060,239 unique entries.

The name given to the collection by those who have it popular was RockYou2021, presumably in honor of RockYou's famous data theft - a company that developed social networking services and applications - in 2009. In that case, hackers broke into the company's servers and got their hands on over 32 million user passwords, stored in txt format.

RockYou2021, however, is of a magnitude not comparable to the theft of 11 years ago. To put this into perspective, the new list includes the entire database called Compilation of Many Breaches (Comb), which was the largest collection of stolen data ever, with 3.2 billion passwords. RockYou2021 is so large that it contains all 3.2 billion passwords from the Compilation of Many Breaches along with passwords from many other leaked databases online. It seems that the forum user has meticulously collected the leaked passwords over the years and stored them all together.

With only 4.7 billion people online, Techradar points out, RockYou2021 potentially includes all the passwords of the entire global population, multiplied by two. The impact of this spread could actually be even more serious as most people use the same passwords on multiple apps and websites. The number of accounts affected by attacks as a result of this leak could potentially reach millions, if not billions.

Users, however, can in the meantime verify if one of their passwords is included in RockYou2021 by checking the database of personal data or CyberNews stolen passwords. If your passwords are present they must be changed immediately. It is obviously recommended to have a different password for each online account.

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