Network Security

Stupid Bowl: ISP jeopardizes subscribers’ Wi-Fi networks by encouraging NFL-themed passwords

Hut, hut, hack?!

A large U.S. cable company fumbled its attempt to engage customers this week when it advised subscribers to change their Wi-Fi passwords to either “GO_NEWENGLAND” or “GO_ATLANTA” to support their Super Bowl team of choice.

As reported by TechCrunch, Charter Communications, an $84 billion telecommunications company operating under the brand name Charter Spectrum, tweeted on Monday: “Change your WiFi password and show guests where your loyalty lies! #ThatsMyTeam”.

Needless to say, customers who follow this advice are all but begging to be hacked by cyber intruders who now know to try this password out on various Wi-Fi networks, especially those in metropolitan areas with an obvious rooting interest. The New England Patriots will battle the Atlanta Falcons in the NFL's title game on Sunday, Feb. 5.

The original tweet appears to be taken down, but not before some followers had the chance to express their discontent. “Are the[y] freaking kidding me… you are actively encouraging people to use crappy passwords. WTF,” wrote one Twitter user.

Bradley Barth

As director of community content at CyberRisk Alliance, Bradley Barth develops content for SC Media online conferences and events, as well as video/multimedia projects. For nearly six years, he wrote and reported for SC Media as deputy editor and, before that, senior reporter. He was previously a program executive with the tech-focused PR firm Voxus. Past journalistic experience includes stints as business editor at Executive Technology, a staff writer at New York Sportscene and a freelance journalist covering travel and entertainment. In his spare time, Bradley also writes screenplays.

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