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How Deep Learning Is Making Computers Better at Guessing Your Passwords

The State of Security

Recently, researchers from The New York Institute of Technology and the Stevens Institute of Technology computer science department released a paper about using a relatively new machine learning technique to make computers 18-24 percent better at guessing your passwords than ever before. In this article, we’ll covert:

  • The historical context in which this technology lives
  • What this technology could be used for by criminals
  • How this technology works
  • How to use it if you’re a red-teamer
  • How to protect yourself as a user
  • How to protect yourself as a blue-teamer in charge of an enterprise

First, let’s talk about what we mean when we talk about “guessing passwords,” as that’s a fairly nebulous term. In this case, we’re talking about cracking password hashes offline. That may leave you asking “What are password hashes?” A fair question.


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