I'd like to follow up on my earlier post about Password Security and what companies can do to keep their users safe. Security Ledger just posted about a computer that can attempt up to 348 billion passwords per second, cracking any 8 character password in as little as 5.5 hours. I'm not talking about a super computer in some university lab, this machine looks like something anyone could build. Meaning any person or organization with a big incentive to crack passwords could build something like this.
I can't think of a better reason to change your passwords to something long, ideally a sentence made up of many words. Such a passphrase (rather than password) would be quite difficult for even a computer such as this one to crack.
Notice in the article which hashing types can be cracked the fastest. PBKDF2, which will be available in Real Studio 2012 r2, is not specifically mentioned. However, it is almost certainly one of the "slow hash" algorithms that were tested.