Are you the type to use the same password for every account?
Or maybe you’ve got the system beat and rotate variations of the same three passwords.
It may be true that one is better than the other, but both leave your information exposed to hackers and identity thieves.
Most people don’t realize the importance of this until the worst happens, but then it’s too late.
Danger of using weak passwords
There are actually two types of risk in using the same password for everything. The first is that someone in your life could hack into your personal accounts and learn things you may not want them to know.
You may trust everyone in your life now, but what if that changes?
Relationships change all the time. Soulmates become exes, and loved ones develop addictions that can prevent them from making morally sound choices.
Bottom line: You should take steps to prevent your passwords from everyone, not just the devious stranger.
So the second danger of a weak password is that anyone can easily guess it. Especially if you’re using common combinations like “Rover123.”
And once someone gets your password, they can access any account where you use the same password. Hackers can run a simple script to try your password across multiple sites to see if there are any hits.
Danger of using single-sign-ons
Most of us are guilty of using Facebook or Google to create new accounts around the web. But this is actually quite dangerous for security.
Sure, it’s super convenient, but it allows third-party websites access to all the information you’ve given the social site. They may not have access to your Facebook or Google password, but hackers can scrape other pertinent information about you to use for identity theft.
You may trust these major brands, but how much do you trust the new site’s security?
If they get hacked, the hackers may have access to more information than you realize you’ve given.
In fact, Princeton researchers identified seven scripts that can pull information from Facebook’s login API.
This is why it’s better to use secure passwords in a password manager to boost your online security.
What is a password manager?
Password managers are programs designed to store and remember your passwords for you. With a secure password manager, you can easily create and store random strings of letters, numbers, and symbols as highly-secure passwords for all your accounts. There’s no need to repeat a password once you’ve it because you can easily recall any password in an instant.
To take it a step further, with these newly secure passwords, you definitely wouldn’t want to have to remember even one of those passwords.
How to choose a password manager
When you’re looking for an online password manager, limit your search to well-known and highly-reputed brands. This way, you can have some relative assurance that they follow the latest and best security protocols.
Security is of paramount importance when choosing a password manager, so you’re not going to want to trust just anyone. Free isn’t always the best option when you’re securing your entire identity and financial health.
But with that said, free isn’t always bad. Many online security companies, like McAfee and Avast, have free password managers you can use to create and store very secure passwords. And because security is their business, you can bet they will keep your information safe.
By now, you should be convinced that a password manager is essential for your online security. But it’s just as important to choose the right company to manage your sensitive information.
Who is your favorite password management company?