You need an account with almost every website you go to these days, and it’s hard keeping track of all of your passwords. It’s especially hard if some of the sites require changing your password every so often. Luckily your web browser can remember your passwords to the sites you regularly use, or you just stay logged in. But what if you need to access something while at work, or traveling? I needed something to organize my passwords with Kyle since we have many online accounts. I felt a little anxiety because if something were ever to happen to me, Kyle wouldn’t have access to anything! Now that I have it all set up he would be able to keep on humming as if nothing happened.
Benefits Of Using A Password Manager
A password manager is a program that stores all of your sensitive account information and their passwords. I noticed my brother using it while I was at his place and he couldn’t say enough good things about it. He is a security nut as well which also makes me appreciate the value he sees in this software. He once put a Wi-Fi password on my parent’s computer and they only have four people within TWO MILES of their place which is 200 km away from the nearest city. So if he says this company is good, I believe him.
Doesn’t My Browser Store All Of My Passwords?
Yes, browsers do have the ability to save passwords. I use Google Chrome as a browser and I can save my passwords with them and it will sync to any other chrome browser if I’m logged in as a user. I used in the past but it doesn’t have any sharing capability or any of the password generation features that Lastpass has.
Lastpass has plugins for every browser as well as apps for iPhone, Android, Windows, and even Blackberry! With them, you can sync with whatever brand you use. The encryption is done at the device level so nothing sensitive gets transferred to Lastpass. Once you make an account you will be required to make a password to log into Lastpass itself. This is the only password you’ll need to remember as the program can generate passwords with specific criteria for each site. It will generate those fun passwords that you’re “supposed” to come up with on your own such as j6%woK5epz. As you can see in the screenshot you have the option to set:
- Password length
- Include upper and/or lower case characters
- Include numeric charters (as well as set a limit)
- Include symbols
- Have the option to make the password pronounceable
Once you’re logged in you can set up “double authentication” which gives you a second layer of security and makes it much more difficult to hack. You can use the same method as Google uses in their Google Authenticator app.
You can edit site information once you have it stored in the system. You can organize your sites into different categories or see how strong your current password is. You can also leave custom notes for yourself, or if you are sharing it with someone so they know what the account is for and what to do with it. If you want to change a password that you already have in your system you can go to the desired website to do so using their password generation tool. Once a new password is applied the system will detect the new password and you’ll have the option to overwrite the existing one.
You have the ability to share account information with friends or family members which gives you some peace of mind knowing someone can shut down your accounts if you suddenly get hit by a bus. Now that I’m married I share all of my accounts with my wife. Social media accounts, email, and financial accounts are all in a shared folder so she can access them in my absence.
It’s also beneficial for sharing account information with my business partner to keep him in the loop with everything. At the time of writing this article we have 27 accounts that we have together and all of them are important for running our business. When I change a password on my computer it will sync so he’ll have access to it and it saves us both many hours of frustration.
With a premium account you can share a folder of items to 5 people, but they don’t have to be premium members to have the folder shared with them. You can also revoke access or restrict their access at any time.
You can also share individual sites to different people and each time you will have the option to allow them to view your password. If an item is shared with you, you can just click on the item and the site will load with the account username and password pre-populated so you won’t need to copy and paste anything. This allows you to share with friends without having them know your password.
Lastpass is free to use, but the premium features are worth the $12/year fee. The premium version will unlock different methods of double authentication as well as priority support and no ads. The best feature would be the availability of the mobile apps so you can take your passwords on the go. If you want to see what the premium features are like you can sign up with this link to get one month for free.
What are your thoughts? Do you use a password manager?