What is Credential Stuffing ?

The Threat of Credential Stuffing

Credential stuffing is a type of cyber attack where hackers use stolen usernames and passwords to gain unauthorized access to online accounts. Hackers obtain login credentials through data breaches or by purchasing them from the dark web. They then use automated tools to try these stolen credentials on various websites in the hopes that users have reused the same username and password combination across multiple sites.

The goal of credential stuffing attacks is to gain access to sensitive information, such as financial data, personal information, and intellectual property. These attacks can cause significant harm to businesses and individuals, as well as damage their reputation.

Mitigating the Threat with MFA

Identity security solutions with MFA (multi-factor authentication) can help mitigate the threat of credential stuffing attacks. MFA is an authentication method that requires users to provide two or more forms of identification before accessing an account. This can include something the user knows (such as a password), something the user has (such as a token or smart card), or something the user is (such as a biometric scan).

By implementing MFA, businesses can ensure that even if hackers have stolen login credentials, they cannot gain access to an account without also having access to the second form of identification. This greatly reduces the risk of successful credential stuffing attacks.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the difference between brute force and credential stuffing?

    While both brute force and credential stuffing attacks have similar goals, they are carried out in different ways.

    The main difference between the two attacks is that brute force attacks try to guess passwords through trial and error, while credential stuffing relies on using pre-existing usernames and passwords that have been obtained from other sources. Credential stuffing attacks are often more successful than brute force attacks because they target users who reuse passwords across multiple accounts, making it easier for attackers to gain access to a large number of accounts with minimal effort.

  • How common is credential stuffing?

    Credential stuffing is unfortunately a relatively common type of cyber attack in today’s digital age. One reason why credential stuffing is so popular among cybercriminals is that it requires relatively little effort on their part. Instead of having to figure out the correct login credentials for each account individually, attackers can simply try large numbers of login combinations at once using automated tools. They hope that some of these combinations will work, giving them access to sensitive data such as personal information, financial data, or proprietary business information.

    Another factor that makes credential stuffing so dangerous is that many people reuse the same password across multiple online accounts. This means that if an attacker manages to obtain a username and password for one account, they may be able to gain access to other accounts as well. It’s always important to use strong, unique passwords for each account, and to enable two-factor authentication whenever possible.

  • What is the best solution for credential stuffing?

    Identity security solutions with MFA are essential for preventing credential stuffing attacks. MFA adds an extra layer of security beyond traditional username and password combinations. By requiring users to provide two or more forms of identification, businesses can significantly reduce the risk of unauthorized access to their accounts.