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It may be the biggest Catch-22 of technology: password protection keeps your data safe. After all, one in five Americans says they have experienced a compromise of an online account. Experts recommend using different, highly complex passwords, including a mix of random letters, numbers and characters. However, that approach makes these passwords nearly impossible for most people to remember.

Instead of writing passwords down in a notebook, try using an online password manager instead. Password managers keep your passwords together in one place. They automatically create strong passwords for you, inserting them as you log in to your different accounts.

CNET, a leading computer and software review magazine, provides a list of top-ranked password manager programs on their website. For 2019, the list includes Last Pass, 1Password, Bitwarden, Dashlane, Keeper and more.

How safe are password managers?

 The typical password manager uses multi-factor authentication. This is a two-step process that makes your passwords safe. Your passwords are stored in what is essentially a “digital vault.” Access to your vault is only possible when you enter both a correct password and an authentication code. Your authentication code is on the device you own, keeping online hackers away from your information. 

A password manager makes sure your vault is protected by encrypting your password information locally before it ever leaves your device. Finally, your passwords are stored, in an encrypted form, on the program manager’s servers.

What else can you do to keep your information safe?

 Once you have a password manager, you can keep your passwords more secure by following a few password best practices.

• Change your passwords regularly, at least once a year

• Never reuse the same password

• Take advantage of smartphone/laptop technology like fingerprint scanning and face recognition

• Select multi-factor authentication when available

All of these practices together provide you extra layers of security and reduce your risk of your password being hacked.

This article was pulled from a recent post on the Tech Helpline blog. Read more at techhelpline.com/blog.


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