How secure are your online passwords?

With so many email addresses, social networks and online banking, remembering your various passwords can be a frustrating experience.

A new survey indicates that more than 70 per cent of us are vulnerable to having our passwords cracked, leaving our online life at risk.

Furthermore the survey, conducted by web security company Smoothwall, found that over half of the 500 people questioned used the same password for all their IT needs.

Even the passwords themselves tend to be obvious and therefore easily cracked, usually consisting of dates of birth, hobbies and family members' names.

Smoothwall says that even varying these passwordswith numbers for letters, or spelling a word backwards can prove pointless as software that can figure out password combinations becomes more sophisticated.

Before you give up completely,thought,  Smoothwall (who else?) is providing a free information pack geared towards teachers, helping them educate children who are often most at risk of cybercrime.

Tips include using the first letters of a memorable sentence and grouping them together or using four random words collectively.

Smoothwall’s free information pack can be ordered from its website.

Do you worry about how secure your online accounts are? Let us know your thoughts.