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What is a Password Manager?

Passwords are meant to be a secure way to restrict unauthorized people from accessing your stuff.

MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) scientist Fernando Corbató introduced the concept of passwords to the world of computers.

What is a Password Manager?: eAskme
What is a Password Manager?: eAskme

Since then, passwords have evolved in complexity and security features, but it's basic feature remains the same.

In the computer and modern digital world, passwords are meant to be the first line of defense for your data.

So, why do hackers target your passwords?

Well, the most common goal for password hacking is identity theft. The damage caused by identity thefts can range from credit card fraud to even generating fraudulent documents and ID cards using your data.

According to CNBC, around 49 million American consumers fell victims to identity fraud in 2020, costing about $56 billion.

How to Create Secure Passwords?

Modern techniques such as two-factor authentication, OTP (One-Time Password) login, etc., are great ways to enforce online security and privacy protection.

However, having a strong & complex password is still the underlying key that locks your account from unauthorized access.

How to Create Secure Passwords?: eAskme


So, how can you create secure passwords in the modern day?

A secure password is a complex combination of letters, numbers, and special characters with neither a pattern nor connection with your personal information.

For instance, a password with your name, date of birth, dog's name, etc., isn't considered a strong password.

But something like "@$%TERGETU134356y" is considered a complex and strong password.

Generating passwords like the one above is easy. I generated the above one by simply running my hands on the keyboard.

But, how do you save or remember them?

You can try learning the passwords by heart.

However, there is a problem.

A study conducted by Google and Harris Poll shows that an ordinary internet user has at least 27 online accounts. That means 27 different passwords.

So in our aim to create strong and complex password combinations, there will be 27 different sets of random passwords.

Thus, memorizing all the passwords we have isn't an option.

Then there is an option to write them down either on a piece of paper or as a file on our devices such as smartphones, computers, etc.

Again, there is the risk of losing our saved passwords or those passwords getting accessed by someone else.

The most reliable solution to our password generation and management problem is to use a password manager.

What is a Password Manager?

A Password Manager is software that allows you to use computer algorithms to generate truly random passwords.

Well, generating a random password was part of the problem.

The real headache was securely storing them.

Modern password management solutions also allow you to store your passwords within the software.

Password managers are secured with a password itself. Thus, to protect all your other passwords, you only have to securely memorize/safeguard the master password that protects your password manager account.

What Are the Benefits of Using a Password Manager?

Let us go through some of the key benefits of using a password manager solution.

Generate Truly Random, Strong, & Complex Passwords:

Password managers implement computer algorithms that generate random passwords that combine letters, numbers, and special characters.

These passwords will help you stay safe from brute force attacks, where the hacker tries to guess your password combination and gain access to your account.

Secure & Encrypted Storage for Passwords:

Modern password manager solutions ensure that all the saved passwords are encrypted using techniques such as military-grade 256-bit encryption, zero-knowledge proof, etc.

Thus, even if hackers gain access to the database where your passwords are ultimately stored, it would require them to use supercomputers to decode your plain password text.

Sync Passwords Across All Your Devices:

Latest password management solutions also ensure that passwords are synced across all the common devices you use. Thus, you do not have to enter your passwords manually, as the password manager will do the same for you.

Most password managers offer you an online portal to log in to your password manager account using your master account username and password.

You also get to experience the password management features via mobile applications and browser extensions.

No Need to Remember Each Password:

As we mentioned earlier, you only need to be conscious about your master account password while using password managers.

Thus, it becomes way easier to memorize or securely store your master password.

Also, the master password is stored in the database with the same level of security as your other passwords, thus giving you peace of mind.

3 Common Types of Password Managers?

There are different types of password management solutions out there.

Let us look at some of the common types.

Cloud Password Managers:

As the name suggests, cloud-based password managers are services that store your passwords on cloud storage used by the service provider.

The benefit of using a cloud password manager is that you can access your passwords across all your own devices, either using a dedicated application or just a web browser.

Desktop Password Managers:

These are the last-gen version of password managers. You install a desktop password manager just like any other software on a computer.

All your passwords are stored within your computer itself.

However, in case your system gets hacked or corrupted, you lose all your passwords as well. Also, you cannot access the stored passwords on other devices.

Browser Password Managers:

All the latest web browsers, including Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, etc., offer inbuilt password management functionalities.

If you're someone who sticks to one type of web browser, then using such a password management system makes sense.

However, you can access such stored passwords only within that particular browser and are less secure than cloud-based options.

Are Password Managers Safe to Use?

You store all your passwords with password managers within a master account, which a third-party service provider often provides.

So, how secure can it be in comparison to directly handing over your passwords to a hacker?

Well, as we mentioned earlier, none of your passwords are stored as plain texts within the password manager database.

They are secured using modern encryption techniques and stored in hackproof storage facilities for added protection.

As we mentioned earlier, your password manager account isn't just protected using a master password. You can implement additional security features such as 2FA (Two-Factor Authentication), OTP-based login, etc., to protect your master account even better.

Now, are password managers 100% secure from password hacks?

No!

Why?

Because password hacks aren't always the fault of computer security.

As pointed out by the IBM Cyber Security Intelligence Index, 95 percent of all successful hacking attempts happen due to human error of some sort.

Thus, user awareness and staying safe from common security threats are as important as using a password manager.

If you still have questions? Share via comments.

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Man Behind eAskme

Gaurav Kumar

Gaurav Kumar is the founder of eAskme.com. He is the professional blogger, writer, motivational speaker and online. He the man behind "Blogging for money guide" and "complete domain name guide". eAskme will help you to become an online entrepreneur. You can learn SEO, Money MAKING, SEO, blogging and more.

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