Survey: R.I. best in nation for password security

RHODE ISLAND scored a perfect 100 for password security, according to a recent survey by /PBN FILE PHOTO

PROVIDENCE – Rhode Islanders have set the gold standard for password security, according to a recent survey by 

The online gaming authority based in Saint Julian, Malta, surveyed 2,000 U.S. residents across 42 states about their current password safety habits. A weighted scoring system was used which considered password reuse, password variation, auto-generated password, password character length and password duration. Each U.S. state was scored on a scale of 0-100 to find the best and worst ranking.

Rhode Island scored a perfect 100 in the study. Data showed only 12.5% of Rhode Island respondents commit the cardinal sin of password reuse for multiple accounts; while 62.5% don’t bother creating variations of their passwords. Half of the state’s residents have embraced auto-generated passwords, and 12.5% do their due diligence of changing passwords every few months.

Nationally, 73.6% of Americans confessed to recycling their passwords across various accounts – a practice many cybersecurity experts deem unsafe. Another 79.1% admitted to using variations of their most-used password for multiple accounts as well, data showed.

Louisiana was second best with password security, according to the study. Unlike Rhode Island, 61.9% in Louisiana admitted to password reuse, but redeem themselves as 66.6% avoid the temptation to use password variations. Only 38% utilized auto-generated passwords. Interestingly, Louisiana excelled in the password characters category, outperforming Rhode Island – with 66.6% exceeding the recommended 12-character count, while 14.2% only updated their passwords frequently, lagging slightly behind Rhode Island. Maine, Maryland and New Mexico rounded out the top five. 

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Wisconsin scored the worst in the nation, according to the study. Data showed 80% of residents in that state reused their passwords while only 23.3% meet the recommended 12-plus characters in their passwords. 

Oklahoma, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Wisconsin rounded out the bottom five in the nation.

Across New England, Maine was second best behind Rhode Island with a score of 58.82, followed by Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Hampshire.

Data from Vermont, Alaska, Hawaii Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming was not available.

The full report can be found here.

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