Forgetting your password is an all too familiar problem in the modern age. In fact, it’s estimated that 4 out of 5 of us have forgotten at least one password in the last 90 days. Considering how much we depend on password protected apps and accounts, this can be a significant hindrance to our work and social lives.
Interested in finding out more about our password habits, Reboot SEO Company analysed 10 of the most used online applications to conclude which passwords users forget the most.
Users forget the passwords of THESE applications the most
Rank Online Account/Application Total average forgotten password searches per Year
1 Apple ID 3,361,200
2 Gmail (Google Mail) 2,511,600
3 Instagram 1,192,800
4 iCloud 546,000
5 Facebook 523,200
6 Discord 369,600
7 Microsoft Windows 10 346,800
9 Amazon 144,840
10 Sony PlayStation Network 81,000
The full data set can be found at Forgotten passwords data.xlsx (sharepoint.com)
#1 Apple ID
The most common application that people forget their password for is Apple ID with 3,361,200 forgotten password average searches per year. Apple ID is used for all Apple devices including Macs, Ipads and Iphones. With 1.2 Billion iPhone users in the world, it should come as no surprise that Apple ID comes in as the most forgotten account password.
Ranking in second position is Gmail, which 2,511,600 people search annually for help finding their Gmail password. Gmail accounted for 36.5% of email opens globally in 2021. With such a huge market share it’s no wonder so many are searching queries such as ‘Forgot Gmail password’ or ‘Gmail forgot password’. Forgetting your email password is particularly troublesome as your email is often the route by which other passwords are recovered, luckily Google allows passwords to be recovered and reset via a recovery phone number or separate recovery email address.
The popular photo sharing site Instagram comes in third place with 1,192,800 annual searches for terms relating to users forgetting their passwords. Instagram, owned by Meta, has skyrocketed in popularity since its founding in 2010, with an estimated 12.9% of humanity checking their instagram every month.
In fourth place is iCloud, Apple’s file back-up and syncing service, with 546,000 annual searches relating to forgetting one’s password. ICloud is a cloud storage service by Apple that offers 5GB of storage free to every user. Due to a lot of people’s work being stored on iCloud, losing access to your account can be very damaging. Luckily if you have access to one of your trusted devices, recovery can be simple.
The social media giant Meta’s flagship service Facebook is in fifth place with 523,200 annual searches regarding forgetting login passwords. It is estimated that 39.8% of the world’s population uses Facebook, making this platform invaluable for the social lives of many.
Tips for remembering your password
1: For the more visually minded, use your keyboard itself as inspiration.
Create a geometric shape that you remember, for those that struggle to remember words and spelling this can be very effective. Similar to the above tip, dictionary based attacks won’t work on a geometric shape. However it is important to remember to make sure that the shape you choose consists of at least 8 characters.
2: Use a memorable sentence such as your favourite movie quote or song lyric.
This is easier to remember than a string of random letters and very secure due to character length. Having the password be a sentence rather than a word also means it’s less vulnerable to dictionary based attacks where hackers brute force the entire dictionary.
3: Use a password manager such as Dashlane or Keeper.
Reputable password managers are encrypted using no knowledge technology which means even they don’t have access to your password details. Using a password manager means you only have to remember one password for all your accounts.
Shai Aharony founder and managing director of Reboot SEO Company stated ‘Forgetting your password can be a hindrance but there are some tips you can follow to make this less likely. Rather than using a combination of random numbers and letters, use multiple words in a memorable sentence; this has the added benefit of security due to character length. Another option is to use a password manager such as Dashlane or Keeper, this means you only have to remember one password.’
1: Reboot SEO Company analysed search data for 10 of the most commonly used online accounts and applications using search volume analytics tool, Semrush to discover which passwords are most frequently forgotten.
2: Three combinations of search terms were analysed ‘forgot X password, ‘forgot password X’ and ‘X forgot password’ this resulted in a monthly average search volume for each key phrase.
3: All three search combinations were then totalled for each application.
4: Each total was then multiplied by 12 to acquire a yearly search average.
5: Search volumes were then ranked highest to lowest to reveal which applications people forget their passwords to the most.
6: This data was collected on the 24th of November 2022 and is correct as of then.