Are You Using a Password Manager Yet?
Passwords are the first line of defense for protecting your account information. Passwords should be strong (long and complex) and unique (one password per account). According to NordPass, a password manager company, the average person has 70-80 online accounts. Managing this many complex passwords on your own can feel like an insurmountable challenge, but a password manager can help.
Password managers are used to store user names and passwords. Many password managers also have a password generation feature. Using a password manager increases the likelihood that users will protect their accounts with strong and unique passwords. And when you use a password manager, you only have to remember one strong password instead of 70+. So why is password hygiene still such a huge problem? It may be that, according to a Digital Guardian survey, only 27.7% of internet users use a secure password manager to manage their passwords.
According to the same Digital Guardian survey, another 11% of internet users store their passwords in a web browser. It appears that browser services like Chrome and Edge see an opportunity to enhance their built-in password management services. The most recent iteration of Edge, Edge 88, includes a new password generation feature. This feature can be used to generate a password for a new or existing account and then store it in the browser. In addition to this password generation feature, Edge also offers a monitoring service for compromised passwords called Password Monitor. Edge runs stored passwords against an ever-changing list of dumped passwords that have been compromised through phishing attacks or other data breaches and alerts the user if their password is compromised. Chrome began offering a monitoring service last year but has recently made improvements to their password services. The new Chrome 88 has made it easier to update passwords and check for compromised passwords.
As browser services continue to enhance their password services, making password management easier to user and seamless to the user, it’s likely that more people will use these services. It’s our hope that widespread use of password managers will contribute to a decrease in password-related hacks. We’ll be watching!