Do you still use the same password on multiple sites? Or perhaps you keep a list of all your passwords on paper, or in a file on your computer?
If so, I’d like to suggest that it’s time to finally give a password manager a try. No system is completely foolproof, but using an app like 1Password is much more secure than re-using passwords you can remember. If a site gets hacked and you’ve used the same password that you use on other sites, it’s very likely that your password will be tried everywhere — on sites that you care about, such as bank accounts, shopping sites, and more.
Here are some reasons to use it:
- 1Password encrypts your passwords within the app.
- You only need to remember your “master password” and 1Password auto-fills the rest.
- You can have it synchronize between desktop and mobile, so you always have access to your passwords.
- It’s available for Mac, Windows, iPhone or iPad, and Android.
When you need to set up a new password, you can have 1Password generate a hard-to-crack password for you. Here’s a short video I made that shows how you can create new items in 1Password.
This video is from a new mini-course I made called “Organize Your Life with Mobile Apps.” So when I mention a worksheet in the video — it’s one that’s included in the course.
Security experts like Bruce Schneier recommend using a password manager. And he has some very good tips on how to choose a password you can remember. See, “Choosing Secure Passwords.”
If you use 1Password, you won’t need to remember many passwords, because the app does that for you — you just need to remember your master password. For that you can use Schneier’s tips to create a secure master password.
Are there a few sites you need to log into when you don’t have your computer or mobile phone with you? You could use his tips to create those few unique passwords that are memorable, and then use 1Password to manage all the rest of your sites.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation also recommends using a password manager app. To learn more about securing your passwords, see their document, “Creating Strong Passwords,” from their excellent site, Surveillance Self-Defense.