Cybercrime is always on the rise, as cybersecurity specialists, we know how much it can cost an organisation if they are victims of an attack, such as fraud or a virus infection.
Having a strong password is a necessity, and using a different one for each site or service that you use is best practise. No matter how strong the password, it wouldn’t be protected against a breach of emails and passwords if they are stored in plain text. However, using a different complex password for each site will prevent a hacker from being able to log into various sites with your email as they would only have the password to one.
Passwords should contain uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and special characters. We understand remembering numerous amounts of passwords as complex as this could be near impossible, and that is where a password manager comes in to assist.
Most of the password managers available to you will work in the same way, you will create an account with an extremely strong master password and then you can store credentials for the sites you wish to save passwords for. All the password managers listed below provide you with the option to auto populate fields when accessing a website, you have saved the credentials for. However, you still have the option to enter these manually.
We feel as though there are four main factors to consider when choosing a password manager, security, ease of use, functionality and cost.
Password managers have different pros and cons, some are available offline and some have had extensive security audits. Depending on your needs one may be more appropriate than the others. The ones listed below are in no particular order, as we believe the password manager best suited to you depends on which of the main factors are most important to you and which one can help you achieve your goals.
LastPass is one of the most commonly known password managers available, and for good reason. The service is very versatile and works on Windows, Mac and Linux as well as all major browsers, such as Chrome, Edge and Safari.
There is one huge negative that looms over LastPass. It was hacked in 2015 resulting in a leak of email addresses and passwords, this is a huge concern for those looking for the most secure password manager, but surely they couldn’t let it happen again, right?
LastPass state that your master password is never actually sent to its servers and are not accessible by the company, they are end-to-end encrypted so even if they wanted to, they cannot see the master password themselves.
LastPass say developers do nightly security reviews as well as receiving regular security audits from third party security specialists. The interface is very user-friendly and almost anyone would find it simple to navigate and use efficiently.
LastPass is free on an unlimited number of devices and there is a premium service available for individuals at just $2 per month. The premium service provides you with priority tech support, 1GB of encrypted file storage and allows you to share passwords with as many people as you want, for easier access.
1Password allows you to do exactly what it is called, have one master password to access all other passwords. As an extra secure way of logging into your account, as well as providing faster access, 1Password provides fingerprint recognition for Android and iPhone.
You can store other details in addition to passwords, such as bank account details, so when you are filling in billing information, it can auto-fill fields if you are logged into 1Password. There is an audit feature built in that identifies weak passwords and prompts you to replace them with much more complex secure ones.
Like LastPass, 1Password encrypts passwords end-to-end so they are never stored in plain text, this means that even if they wanted to, they cannot see your master password. In addition to this the user can control if they wish to have their data stored offline, with 1Password or with a third party, such as iCloud.
For an individual 1Password is $2.99 per month and a free version is only offered for 30 days, unlike LastPass, but it does support Windows, MacOS and all popular web browsers.
Dashlane has many similarities to LastPass, the main ones being its slick design and the fact it can be used cross-platform. Dashlane automates a lot of processes for you, it will auto fill online forms with your details, such as your email address, password and bank account information.
If one of your accounts does suffer a breach, there is a feature that allows you to reset all your passwords at one time, Dashlane achieves this by randomly generating a secure password for each of your accounts.
Dashlane stores data in the cloud but you can choose to store your data locally on your device. However, storing your data locally hinders the functionality of some of the cross-platform features. Like the others no passwords are stored on the servers in plain text.
There’s a very useful feature built into Dashlane, that warns you if one of your accounts has been compromised or if it is at risk.
The premium version of Dashlane allows you to manage passwords across an unlimited number of devices. Dashlane is free for a single device, if you wish to use multiple devices then it is $40 for the year.
Keeper is a very secure online password manager. Firstly, because it boasts a multi-factor authentication system, for logging in, making unauthorised access for hackers extremely difficult. It works on all desktop operating systems (OS) available as well as the most popular browsers, such as Chrome, Firefox, IE, Edge and Safari. Keeper has a wide array of features available, including an easy to use web interface.
Like others Keeper provides a feature to auto-fill online forms with saved information from within your password manager, saving time when doing tasks, such as purchasing items or logging into social media.
There is a free version of Keeper, which is always nice, the main limitation being that you can only have your manager saved on a single device, multiple devices require the premium version of the software, which is available at $25.49 for the year.