Banks, credit cards, Facebook and Twitter, the New York Times, Gmail; the list of accounts and services that require a password is endless.
Using a single password to access everything poses a huge security risk. Having a different password for each account is better but it’s almost impossible to remember all of them.
Sure you can save the passwords to your web browser but that poses a security risk depending on which browser you’re using and how many people have access to your computer.
And, what about sites that you access on your mobile devices?
A password manager is the best option. It allows you to save all your passwords securely and access them with one killer master password. There are many to choose from, some free, but 1Password is the best I’ve tried.
1Password for Windows installs support for Internet Explorer out of the box, and for Safari for the Mac version. Plugins are available for Chrome and Firefox browsers.
Download the app to your desktop, create an account locally which is encrypted, create a single strong master password and you’re good to go. Every time you login to an account the app will prompt you to enter the master login and it populates the username and password for the account you’re trying to access. If the password is not stored it will prompt you to do so.
1Password also saves important information like credit cards and membership numbers.
If you frequently access accounts on your mobile device, give 1Password for mobile a try. In addition to web usernames and passwords, 1Password saves a variety of information that you might find in your wallet (licenses, social security numbers, credit cards, etc.), software serial numbers, non-web account information (like iTunes and e-mail) and freeform secure notes to store any data you’d like to keep safe from prying eyes. It has a browser built right into it. Tap a saved login and you’re immediately taken to the site, your username and password entered. All you have to do is tap to log in.
1Password is pricier than many password managers but why skimp on security? A single user license will set you back $49.99, with an additional $14.99 for the iPhone/iPad app. Not sure if you want to spring for it? Try it free for 30 days and if you decide not to purchase a license, 1Password still allows you to store up to 20 passwords.