One of the most painful growing pains all Internet users must go through is managing their passwords. In the early days of digital technology, it was painfully easy. Most people didn’t need to remember more than their email password, as everything else they did was still going on in the physical world.
The line has blurred so much in the last 15-20 years that it’s hard to tell if there is even a line anymore. You can shop, bank, game, make video calls, take classes, talk to doctors and more online, but only if you remember your password.
With so much of your most important information stored online, powerful passwords are essential. Nobody’s going to guess your password on a whim unless you’re one of the people who think that “password123” is still a good idea, but spyware, keystroke trackers, and AI-based technology allow motivated cybercriminals a strong chance of breaking into poorly protected accounts.
How to Create Great Passwords
Most people have no problem creating a really great password that combines letters, numbers, symbols, and both lowercase and capital letters. The problem is creating one of these for every single one of your accounts and doing so that no two are the same. The trick then becomes to make one password for all of your accounts or use something much more sophisticated than our fleeting memory to harness all of those terrific passwords in one place.
The Password Solution
That’s where premium password management systems like Dashlane come in. They can work in two ways, whichever you feel most comfortable with, to lock up the security of your accounts with little need to worry about future break-ins. Here’s how it works. The first step is to allow the password manager to generate random strong passwords for each of your accounts. These passwords will be stored by the manager rather than memorized by you. This can be a bit nerve-wracking since you can only see your own passwords by logging into a third-party solution, but it also allows you to have extremely complicated passwords for all your accounts that would be next to impossible to guess. You also answer multiple security questions for each account based on your own personal information, which are much easier to remember.
Once that information is collated, you protect all the individual passwords with one master password or passphrase that you enter each time you want to log into one of your accounts. This password will be on the long side and might include numbers and symbols, but the fact remains that it is the one and the only password you have to memorize from now on. It will be a combination of words from an algorithm that Dashlane uses that makes sense to you but not to anyone else. This ensures that even if someone stole your physical computer or smartphone, they could not break into your individual accounts because the auto-fill function would be turned off and worthless. The bottom line is that it’s one tricky password instead of dozens, and the protection extends across all of your accounts at the same time.