Password Managers

After a couple months of testing, I’ve finally found a new favorite password manager: RoboForm.

I’ve urged my clients to use a password manager for quite a long time.  Remember the days when you could use your pet’s name as a password and use the same password on multiple sites?  I certainly hope you’re not doing that anymore!  Instead, use a password manager.

Your password manager can generate and remember random passwords for you that are virtually impossible to hack.  Sometimes you’ll see estimates on how many years it would take for a program to accurately guess these randomized passwords.  it’s worlds beyond the very insecure technique of using your pet’s name, or something as horrifying simple as pass1234 (still one of the most common passwords – yikes!)

Most password managers, including RoboForm, can also do a security check to make sure you’re not using the same password on multiple sites.  If you are, it can help you change them by generating a random password for each site.

My favorite password manager used to be LastPass, and it IS a really nice password manager, but the recent changes they made spurred me to look for another and I found — and fell in love with — RoboForm.

In my testing, I tried some that were pretty awful, a couple that were just ok, and some that were more expensive than they needed to be.  I’ve deleted them all and bought myself the one that I found to be simple, straightforward, and secure:RoboForm.  (In fact, I liked it so much that I’ve signed up to give referrals in my link.) It has a free version and a paid version called “everywhere”.

You can use it on all your devices, free for 30 days, and after that, it will still work on just one device free, but for just a few bucks (it was about 20 when I purchased it a couple months back, but these things often offer specials, so you might get it for less.)

How Password Managers Work
If you haven’t used a password manager, they remember and encrypt ALL your passwords. If you’ve used a different password manager before, you *should* be able to download all your passwords as a csv file, and simply upload it to RoboForm. I was able to do this with LastPass password manager.

If you have never used a password manager before, RoboForm will offer to remember each password you use as you enter it. From then on, it will offer to fill in the user name and passwords for you on the sites you visit and apps you use. Now you only need to memorize ONE password – yow password – the one to your password manager. Write down that one password, because for security reasons, the password manager does not keep your password and can’t remind you.

One Unique Password
There are a few tricks for coming up with one memorable password. It’s really worth coming up with something memorable, and it will now be the only password you need. For example, you might use a childhood address with random symbols to make it more secure. Or perhaps the first letter of each word in a favorite quote, along with some symbols.

Important: Be sure to write down your one password in a safe place.  You’ll need to do this because, as I mentioned, the password manager will not remember your password and cannot provide it to you.

RoboForm Everywhere also has a two-step authentication for even more secure. It can also save other secure info for you. It’s amazingly versitile.

How to Start Using Your Password Manager
On your PC, RoboForm will require you to log in with your full password.  On your phone, after the initial login, you can set up a four digit quick password.  Once again, write it down.  That’s it.  Once you’ve logged in, RoboForm will automatically offer to fill all your passwords.

Now your password manager will remember all your passwords and offer them to you when you need them.  You can also always log into your password manager and search for passwords, right clicking for a menu to copy the password and paste it in.

Using a password manager quickly becomes second nature. You’ll need to add the password manager to your computer’s browser(s). There’s a link right on RoboForm’s website to download a copy for your computer, and it should install it into your browsers for you. For your phone, you will download RoboForm from the play store or app store.  Install it, log in, and start using it.  That’s it!

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