Tech Tips: How to store and manage passwords securely

By , on August 2, 2015


With the constant security breaches in reports lately, you’re probably starting to get worried that your password may be compromised and your bank or social media account may be hacked next.

Here we show you how to make strong passwords and how to keep track of all of them. As a start, know that it’s safer to have different passwords for different accounts. Don’t fret about the hassle of remembering them all. There are different ways to store and manage them.

List them down

This is an obvious and easy way to keep track of your passwords for numerous accounts – writing down each username and password in a sheet of paper. There’s a drawback to this though. When you lose that confidential paper, all your passwords are out in the open. But if you’ll be able to secure that sheet, you’ll still be safer than using one password for all accounts.  Treat the paper containing your passwords the same way you would treat valuable documents.

Should you prefer listing your passwords digitally, know that it is riskier to store confidential information on your computer and more so online or in the cloud. But if you must do this, at least change the file name to something less obvious than “passwords.”

READ: Tech Tips: How to secure sensitive files — even deleted ones

Rely on password managers

There are numerous storage lockers for managing passwords. Some reputable services are Dashlane, LastPass, Sticky Password and many more. In here, you can store all your passwords under one master password. Each password manager has a unique feature, such as storing other confidential information in it. Usually, though, you’ll need to pay for these additional perks or for the full and premium versions.

Aside from storing your passwords, these services can also help you generate random complex passwords for several accounts with their password generator features. More so, some password managers can be installed as browser plug-ins for password capture and replay. During a first-time log in, they automatically offer to save your account name and password. The time you revisit a site, they also offer to automatically fill in your details. Aside from the username and password, these services can also auto-fill names, email address, phone numbers and other personal data on web forms. And when there are multiple accounts in one website, some can also save multiple log in details. How about logging in a different computer or in the smartphone? These storage lockers can also be synced in different devices and allow secure sharing of passwords to other devices. Some services even go beyond to sharing your account details to a specified person when you die. Password managers differ in interface, compatibility, flexibility and prices. There is definitely one that will suit every need.

Although relying on storage lockers is much easier and maybe safer, there is a downside to this as well. Password managers may be the target of hackers but good thing that these services, especially the paid ones, have maximum security against brute-force attacks. The harder part is forgetting your master password and having to go through a long and tedious process before regaining access to your list of numerous passwords when you need to log in a particular site as soon as possible.