New UK Legislation Elevates Cybersecurity Standards for iPhone and Android Users

Chris Thompson

By Chris Thompson


In a significant development for online security, UK users of iPhones and Android devices are bracing for a substantial shift as fresh legislation, setting out new minimum-security standards, takes effect. Gone are the days of grappling with complex password requirements encompassing a mix of upper and lower case letters, special characters, and assorted criteria; the challenge is about to intensify.

The shift follows the enactment of a new law by the government, which came into force this week, reshaping the landscape of internet password protocols. This legislation is geared towards enhancing consumer protection against the ever-looming threats posed by hackers and cybercriminals, with enforcement commencing on April 29. Under the updated regulations, any internet-capable device must conform to a stringent set of password standards going forward.

A broad spectrum of devices will be affected, spanning from gaming consoles to smartphones encompassing both iPhone and Android platforms, and even extending to internet-connected appliances like refrigerators. Manufacturers will be barred from employing ‘weak’ default passwords such as ‘admin’ or ‘12345’, while users will be required to create a new password during initial setup.

While talking to The Express, David Rogers, CEO of Copper Horse, weighed in on these developments, stating, “We started this work many years ago so that people would not have to understand lots about the security of connected product in order to be secure. Getting rid of things like default passwords that are set to ‘admin’ or ‘12345’ are fundamental basics.”

Rogers emphasized the criticality of robust security measures, adding, “Manufacturers should not be providing anyone with products like webcams that are so weak and insecure that they are trivial to hack into and takeover.” In response to mounting apprehensions regarding the security of internet-connected products, the government has announced a crackdown on easily-guessed passwords.

In 2023, the UK witnessed a prevalent use of weak passwords, as evidenced by the top 10 most commonly utilized passwords:

  1. 123456
  2. Password
  3. Qwerty
  4. Liverpool
  5. 123456789
  6. arsenal
  7. 12345678
  8. 12345
  9. abc123
  10. chelsea

This legislative move marks a pivotal stride towards fortifying cybersecurity standards and fostering a safer digital ecosystem for UK consumers, heralding a new era of heightened vigilance and resilience against cyber threats.