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Make Peace With Your Internet Passwords – Forbes Advisor UK

We’ve all been there. Eager to quickly log in to check your bank balance or to checkout while shopping online, you reach the “enter password” step – and your mind goes blank.

The next (boring) step is to reset your password. To make it easier to remember next time around, it’s tempting to fall back on the trusted name and number combination you use for your email, social media accounts, and laptop. job.

But resist, because it could open up all kinds of trouble for you if any of your accounts get hacked.

To help you make your internet passwords simpler and more secure, here we take a look at why it’s so important to set them correctly, the dos and don’ts when choosing passwords, and the tools that might. make your online life easier.

What is an Internet password?

We store so much information about ourselves online, whether in our emails, on social media platforms, through online banking, or on shopping sites, that it is important to protect accounts by password.

This means that in order to access these accounts you will usually need to enter both your email address or username and a password of your choice.

Why are Internet passwords important?

Unfortunately, there are cybercriminals out there who seek to exploit weaknesses in your online accounts in order to steal data about you in order to commit identity fraud or gain access to your bank account.

It is therefore important to choose a password that is difficult to guess in order to avoid exposing yourself to online hacking.

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Dos and Don’ts of Choosing an Internet Password

To ensure the security of your online accounts, follow our instructions when deciding your password.

To do…

  • use at least 10 characters for any password and make sure these characters are a combination of upper and lower case letters, symbols and numbers
  • think especially carefully about the password you use for your email account because, with access to it, it might be possible for a scammer to change your other passwords online
  • The National Cyber ​​Security Center (NCSC) recommends connecting three random, but memorable, words to form a strong password, with special characters to make it even more difficult to decipher
  • make sure your software and applications are up to date, as newer versions of software are often intended to correct potential weaknesses
  • use two-factor authentication whenever possible. This is when you need to provide additional information to log in, such as a code that is sent to your phone.
  • consider using a password manager to help you with your internet passwords (more details below).

Born…

  • use only one word as password – especially predictable words such as “password” or “qwerty”
  • use the same password for multiple accounts
  • use your name or the name of a close family member as the password
  • write down your passwords in a notebook, as they could be stolen, or keep them in a document on your computer desktop.

What is a password manager and how can it help?

A password manager is software that stores your Internet passwords securely for you. This means that you don’t need to remember passwords for every website you access – just one master password to access all of them.

Some password managers will also help you choose the most secure passwords for each site by generating password suggestions made up of a combination of numbers, letters, and symbols.

There are free and paid password managers. You can have one automatically included with your internet browser, device, or computer, such as Google Password Manager and iCloud Keychain, as well as those included with Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Internet Explorer.

While these offer password storage and sometimes extras like storing addresses and payment information, they’re usually limited to certain devices and browsers and only offer basic functionality.

Additional features that can be included with paid password managers include:

  • two-factor authentication
  • ability to securely share passwords with trusted family and friends
  • possibility to use the same password manager on different devices and platforms
  • unlimited password storage – free versions can limit you to a set number of accounts
  • identification of vulnerable passwords
  • password generation
  • place to store other secure data, such as card details and important notes
  • emergency contact option – to make sure someone else has access in an emergency
  • form filling software to save you even more time when you are online
  • remember passwords for applications as well as websites.

What password managers are available?

If you are considering signing up for a dedicated password management service, it is important to understand what the different options offer.

To help you choose the best password manager for your needs, we have listed some of the most popular choices along with their main features below.

Dashlane

Dashlane calls itself “the app that makes the internet easier,” saying it can “can dramatically simplify your entire online life.” It will automatically create, save and fill in strong passwords for your online accounts.

Its free plan lets you use it on a single device and store up to 50 passwords that you can access using a master password. It will also automatically fill out forms and payment details, alert you when the sites you use have security breaches, has two-factor authentication, and you can securely share up to five accounts.

Upgrading to its premium plan will set you back $ 3.33 per month (around £ 2.62) or $ 39.99 per year (around £ 31.43), which gives you all the features of the free account, as well as passwords and unlimited devices, dark web monitoring and alerts, and VPN for Wi-Fi protection.

There’s also a family plan that lets you invite up to five other people to use it for $ 4.99 per month (around £ 3.93) and business plans start at $ 5 per user and per month (around £ 3.94). Find out more here

Last pass

LastPass says it “remembers all of your passwords on every device for free.” You will need to install its browser extension, create a strong master password, and create a “vault manager” where you can add, view, and manage items.

Its free plan allows access on all devices, individual password sharing, will save, generate and fill in passwords, as well as alert you to weak passwords, and has secure notes, security challenges. and multi-factor authentication.

Upgrading to its premium plan for £ 2.60 per month will give you everything from free account to one-to-many password sharing, emergency access (ensuring that someone other has access to important information in an emergency), advanced multi-factor options (like fingerprint authentication), priority tech support, LastPass for apps and dark web monitoring.

A family plan of £ 3.40 per month allows up to six users to use the subscription. Business plans are also available. Find out more here

Guardian

Keeper claims that it is the “leading cybersecurity platform for preventing data breaches and password-related cyber threats” and promises that if you use it, “you’ll never have to worry again. remembering or worrying about passwords ”.

You can sign up for a 30-day free trial of Keeper Unlimited, then enjoy limited features for free on a single mobile device, including the ability to generate passwords, unlimited password storage, identity storage, and payments and two-factor authentication. .

For £ 2.49 per month or £ 29.99 per year you can sign up for Keeper Unlimited after your trial which will give you access and use on unlimited devices, unlimited password storage, unlimited storage identities and payments, fingerprint and facial ID login, secure record sharing, emergency access, web app and 24/7 support.

There are more expensive options that include secure file storage and dark web monitoring, as well as family plans starting at £ 5.99 per month and business plans starting at £ 3.33 per user per month. . Find out more here

1 Password

1Password says it is “the world’s most popular password manager.” It says it will allow you to “connect to sites and fill out forms securely with one click”.

You can try a 30-day free trial, and then it costs $ 2.99 per month (around £ 2.35). For this, you will have access on an unlimited number of devices with applications for Mac, iOS, Windows, Android, Linux and Chrome OS, unlimited passwords, 1 GB of document storage, 24-hour email support / 24/7, two-factor authentication, travel mode (which removes sensitive data from your devices as you cross borders, then restores one-click access when you arrive), and 365-day history to allow you to restore deleted passwords.

There’s also a family plan that lets you share with up to five users for $ 4.99 per month (around £ 3.91) and a business plan for $ 7.99 per user per month (around 6 , £ 27). Find out more here

RoboForm

RoboForm says that as a user you will “never have to remember or re-type your passwords again” and calls itself “one-click convenience”.

There is a free version, available on a range of browsers, which will store an unlimited number of logins, automatically fill out web forms, verify passwords, save passwords for applications, securely send logins, and manage. bookmarks. It also has strong encryption and emergency access.

Its Everywhere account costs $ 1.99 per month (around £ 1.57), billed annually and includes all the features of the free account, plus access on all browsers and devices, cloud backup, authentication to two factors, a secure shared folder, emergency access and 24/7 priority support.

There’s also a family plan for up to five users for $ 3.98 (around £ 3.13) and business plans starting at $ 29.95 per user per year (around £ 23.52), on the basis of a one-year subscription. Find out more here

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