You Need A Password Manager – Day 3 of Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2021

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explains what a password manager is and why you need one.

WATCH You Need A Password Manager – Day 3 of Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2021

Password Manager – Cybersecurity Videos Day 3

Shelly Miller 

Craig, could tell us a little bit about password managers

Craig Taylor 

Shelly, that’s a topic near and dear to my heart password managers is one of the greatest inventions in the last 10 years for cybersecurity. And I would encourage anyone listening to this to immediately figure out how to download and adopt one in your day to day life, you’ll probably not like me very much for the first little bit, then you’ll begrudge me then you’ll love me, you’ll be like, Oh, I can’t believe I couldn’t live without my password manager anymore. But what it is, is a database that’s encrypted and secured with all of your unique passwords in it.

And when you first adopt one, they won’t all be unique. But a password manager, a smart one, like LastPass, will tell you which passwords are being reused at different websites over time, because it learns your passwords as you operate, your computer stores them in the database automatically. And then it’ll tell you, you need to go change that password at that travel website or that password at that email website. So password managers can be thought of as like a safety deposit box in which all your critical account information is stored, right? Your deed for your house and your life insurance. Well, in the virtual world. It’s your passwords to all to your bank account, to your email account, all of those things. So it’s really critical information goes into a password manager, and it’s stored it runs on your computer inside a browser, it’s integrated to your day to day workflow. Ultimately, it’s the best thing you can adopt for cybersecurity for password hygiene.

Shelly Miller 

Okay, so the benefits of it, you mentioned that it would it knows some of the old the reoccurring passwords that you’ve used, what else would you say?

Craig Taylor 

Well, it encrypts the passwords for storage. I’ve talked to a lot of people who have all kinds of really interesting and less secure methods of storing passwords in Excel spreadsheets on sticky notes around their computer, or under their keyboard, or, you know, offline, but none of its efficient, and all of its insecure.

So Password Manager provides you ironclad security around those passwords. And it allows them put them readily available. So when you go to log into a website, let’s see, this is a real story that happened to me, I got a LinkedIn recommendation, I clicked the link, because I wasn’t paying close enough attention. I went to the LinkedIn website, and I waited for my password manager to enter my username and password like it’s done hundreds of times before it didn’t. And I refresh the page. And it still didn’t. And I was confused for a moment, then I realized I’m not at LinkedIn, I’m at a phishing website trying to steal my password. And my password manager was smart enough to know, I don’t have a LinkedIn.com email a website here, I was in Italy, somewhere on a server in Italy.

So password managers have hidden features and benefits like that they generate random passwords for you and plug them into the websites when you need a new password. It just creates a random 17 to 20 character string of characters for you to use. You don’t have to type it in because it cuts and pastes it in for you. So they’re productivity, enhancing their security enhancing and there’s hidden benefits, like not falling for phishing attacks.

Shelly Miller 

That’s huge. That is very important. So what would you say the risks are with using a password manager?

Craig Taylor 

Well, that’s a great question. And there are risks. And you need to know and go into this fully informed. So no software ever written is perfect. There are bugs flaws. And if you look at some of the big names in the marketplace, even LastPass has had vulnerabilities in its Password Manager in the past. And but security professionals have said, it’s the lesser of two evils to have all your eggs in one password manager basket, then any other method of managing passwords out there. So the risk is if someone was to get your master password, they could have access to all of your accounts. Now, most of the password vendors out there, make it very difficult for you to get into your own account if you’re coming from anywhere but your usual home address, right? If you’re sitting at home at your desktop, and you go to log into LastPass it’ll say Yeah, you’ve been here from there before we know where you’re coming from. We’ll let you in with your username, password and a second factor. But I went to a business in Boston one time and I had to log into my LastPass on a on a company computer there to do a presentation and LastPass said you’re coming from somewhere new, we’re going to send you an email to validate where you’re coming from.

And so I had to go into my email I had to remember my email password or get it off my phone, which is what I did because you they synchronize between your computer and your phone LastPass and all these password managers so I logged in the email authorize the new computer log into my last pass, then I was able to log into zoom and do all my presentation. So it’s got some really good safety features. But when you’re looking at adopting a password manager, look for a company that’s open and transparent that has a bug bounty program that rewards hackers or white hat hackers for reporting bugs in the software, with monetary you know, reward. If you find a bug in LastPass, they will pay you to tell them about it so that hackers don’t exploit it. That’s a bug bounty program. But if you have an open and transparent company LastPass sent out an announcement that they had a problem with one part of their software to stop using it until they issue to fix.

They have an automated update process to push patches to the software itself so you don’t have to intervene and stop. It just shows up in your browser’s Oh LastPass is updating. Those are key things to look for in a password manager. Others are dash lane and one password and you know roboform It doesn’t matter so much with the commercially the big commercial cross password products that are out there so much as using one when I get asked what do you recommend? I have my preference, but I want you can find your own preference, but the most important thing is to use one. You’ll thank me in the long run.

Shelly Miller 

Okay, and that’s our takeaway, you need to have a password manager. It’s a must today.

Craig Taylor 

Absolutely.

Shelly Miller

Shelly Miller

Entrepreneur, marketer and social psychologist - I help you make the most of your business with marketing, online and offline.

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