Recent research by LastPass – the global leader in zero-knowledge password management found the average individual has over 18 passwords for their online accounts.
The first World Password Day was celebrated back in 2013 when it was launched to raise awareness about the importance of using strong passwords. Nearly a decade on, password management still seems to be a reality of the digital age that few have mastered!
We spoke to Karim Toubba, CEO of LastPass on why passwords are often at the forefront of cyberattacks and why now is the time to take stock of online habits to ensure the necessary steps are taken to keep online information safe – especially passwords.
“Passwords – while designed to give you access to online worlds while protecting your information – are often at the forefront of cyberattacks. And while time and again we find that consumers and businesses are not taking the appropriate steps to safeguard their passwords, it is more important than ever for everyone to take their online security more seriously.
“World Password Day is an important moment to take stock of your online habits and ensure you take the necessary steps to keep your online information safe – especially passwords, which are your first line of defence. This comes clearly into focus with new data from our research team, which found nearly three-quarters of consumers noting they’ve reset their password at least once in a month because they forgot them.”
“Given the frustrations that can often accompany keeping track of unique passwords for our ever-expanding digital lives, we also found that only half of respondents are confident in their passwords protecting them from a breach. Leveraging a password manager alleviates many of the pain points that accompany password hygiene while managing your logins for you – so you can get back to focusing on things that matter.”
Why use a password manager?
One word – security! Millions of us use easy-to-guess words such as pet’s name, football team names and even something as simple as “1234” to access online services leaving us wide open to attack.
Cybercriminals are becoming increasingly savvy and can crack weak passwords in a matter of seconds.
Using a password manager will make your online life easier and more secure.
A password manager can create more complex passwords for you and remember them when you next log in.
So why are only 20% of the UK population currently using one?
- Anxiety that one company will store all your vital information
- Lack of trust
How to use a password manager
The first step is to download your chosen password manager. You will then be given instructions to import your logins either manually or from your browser.
The app will automatically generate strong passwords for any sites you use and autofill as you browse.
The passwords may be longer, but the need to remember is removed meaning they can be more complex and therefore more secure.
Using a password manager also removes the duplication of passwords. It automatically creates a unique login for each of your accounts meaning the risk of attacks across multiple accounts is reduced.
Another often overlooked benefit is that most password managers help prevent phishing attacks, where scammers will encourage you to click a link so they can steal your credentials.
How can I know these companies are trustworthy?
While there is a small risk in placing all your logins in one place, the likelihood of the password manager being breached is extremely low. Password managers keep your details secure by encrypting your logins so they can only be accessed when you enter the master password. Your plain text master passwords are never stored on the password manager’s servers.
Learn more here