Here Are the Most Commonly Used Passwords of 2017

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iStock

When a website forces you to use numbers, symbols, and a certain amount of characters in your password, it can be frustrating, but those strength requirements are there for a reason. Without them, many users will enter a password that’s easy to remember and, by extension, is easy for hackers to guess. There are several ways to keep your online identity secure, but before you do anything else, make sure you’re not using any passwords from the list below.

SplashData compiled this data by analyzing millions of accounts—mostly from users in western Europe and North America—that were compromised in the past year, Gizmodo reports. To show how the most popular passwords of 2017 compare to 2016's, they've indicated whether each entry has kept its old slot, gone up or down in the rankings, or is new to the list.

The latest round-up includes some predictable entries: “123456” occupies the same number one slot it held last year, followed by “password” at number two. There are also a few new additions to the top 25 list. The year 2017 saw the rise of passcodes like “freedom,” “iloveyou,” and “whatever.” The list also reflects current pop culture trends, with “starwars” landing at number 16. Of course, laziness never goes out of fashion: “login,” “qwerty,” and “abc123” are all classics that made it back into the top rankings this year.

Avoiding these common passwords is a start, but to ensure your accounts are safe going into the new year, you’ll need to set the bar higher. After reviewing the below list, check out our tips for coming up with a password that’s as strong as possible.

1. 123456 (Unchanged)

2. Password (Unchanged)

3. 12345678 (Up 1)

4. qwerty (Up 2)

5. 12345 (Down 2)

6. 123456789 (New)

7. letmein (New)

8. 1234567 (Unchanged)

9. football (Down 4)

10. iloveyou (New)

11. admin (Up 4)

12. welcome (Unchanged)

13. monkey (New)

14. login (Down 3)

15. abc123 (Down 1)

16. starwars (New)

17. 123123 (New)

18. dragon (Up 1)

19. passw0rd (Down 1)

20. master (Up 1)

21. hello (New)

22. freedom (New)

23. whatever (New)

24. qazwsx (New)

25. trustno1 (New)

[h/t Gizmodo]

Kodak’s New Cameras Don't Just Take Photos—They Also Print Them

Your Instagram account wishes it had this clout.
Your Instagram account wishes it had this clout.
Kodak

Snapping a photo and immediately sharing it on social media is definitely convenient, but there’s still something so satisfying about having the printed photo—like you’re actually holding the memory in your hands. Kodak’s new STEP cameras now offer the best of both worlds.

As its name implies, the Kodak STEP Instant Print Digital Camera, available for $70 on Amazon, lets you take a picture and print it out on that very same device. Not only do you get to skip the irksome process of uploading photos to your computer and printing them on your bulky, non-portable printer (or worse yet, having to wait for your local pharmacy to print them for you), but you never need to bother with ink cartridges or toner, either. The Kodak STEP comes with special 2-inch-by-3-inch printing paper inlaid with color crystals that bring your image to life. There’s also an adhesive layer on the back, so you can easily stick your photos to laptop covers, scrapbooks, or whatever else could use a little adornment.

There's a 10-second self-timer, so you don't have to ask strangers to take your group photos.Kodak

For those of you who want to give your photos some added flair, you might like the Kodak STEP Touch, available for $130 from Amazon. It’s similar to the regular Kodak STEP, but the LCD touch screen allows you to edit your photos before you print them; you can also shoot short videos and even share your content straight to social media.

If you want to print photos from your smartphone gallery, there's the Kodak STEP Instant Mobile Photo Printer. This portable $80 printer connects to any iOS or Android device with Bluetooth capabilities and can print whatever photos you send to it.

The Kodak STEP Instant Mobile Photo Printer connects to an app that allows you to add filters and other effects to your photos. Kodak

All three Kodak STEP devices come with some of that magical printer paper, but you can order additional refills, too—a 20-sheet set costs $8 on Amazon.

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

The Reason Dogs Are Terrified of Thunderstorms—And How You Can Help

The face of a dog who clearly knows that a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
The face of a dog who clearly knows that a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
Charles Deluvio, Unsplash

Deafening thunder can be a little scary even for a full-grown human who knows it’s harmless, so your dog’s terror is understandable. But why exactly do thunderstorms send so many of our pawed pals into a tailspin?

Many dogs are distressed by unexpected loud noises—a condition known as noise aversion, or noise phobia in more severe cases—and sudden thunderclaps fall into that category. What separates a wailing siren or fireworks show from a thunderstorm in a dog's mind, however, is that dogs may actually realize a thunderstorm is coming.

As National Geographic explains, not only can dogs easily see when the sky gets dark and feel when the wind picks up, but they can also perceive the shift in barometric pressure that occurs before a storm. The anxiety of knowing loud noise is on its way may upset your dog as much as the noise itself.

Static electricity could also add to this anxiety, especially for dogs with long and/or thick hair. Tufts University veterinary behaviorist Nicholas Dodman, who also co-founded the Center for Canine Behavior Studies, told National Geographic that a static shock when brushing up against metal may heighten your dog’s agitation during a storm.

It’s difficult to nail down why each dog despises thunderstorms. As Purina points out, one could simply be thrown off by a break from routine, while another may be most troubled by the lightning. In any case, there are ways to help calm your stressed pet.

If your dog’s favorite spot during a storm is in the bathroom, they could be trying to stay near smooth, static-less surfaces for fear of getting shocked. Suiting them up in an anti-static jacket or petting them down with anti-static dryer sheets may help.

You can also make a safe haven for your pup where they’ll be oblivious to signs of a storm. Purina behavior research scientist Ragen T.S. McGowan suggests draping a blanket over their crate, which can help muffle noise. For dogs that don’t use (or like) crates, a cozy room with drawn blinds and a white noise machine can work instead.

Consulting your veterinarian is a good idea, too; if your dog’s thunderstorm-related stress is really causing issues, an anti-anxiety prescription could be the best option.

[h/t National Geographic]