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Password Managers

Password Managers

The safe way to store your login information

The average person has 70-80 passwords. Combine that with remembering birthdays, where you put your car keys, that new neighbor's name, washing your hands, feeding your family and the rest of your never-ending list, it's no wonder people reuse the same password over and over again. Typically passwords that you can remember are also passwords that are easy to guess (good for hackers, bad for you). So what's a girl to do?

Forgot Password meme

Let a program do the remembering for you!

A quick survey around our own office showed that the majority of people weren't using a password manager app. My guess is you probably fall into this category, too. Are you using one of these options?

  • Notepad (yikes, let me guess it's named "passwords.txt")
  • Browser's "remember me" feature
  • Google Account
  • Excel doc (probably also named "passwords", very clever)
  • Paper (nobody will ever guess to look in your desk drawer for the password, you've really foiled their plans!)

While the above options may be easy, they certainly aren't safe. 

Let's review some safer alternatives.

  • Single Sign On (SSO): You may be familiar with this option if you find yourself saying "I only have 1 password at work". While SSO is a popular and secure option it doesn't cover individual accounts that you may have created to get your work done. Have you signed up for your own Dropbox account or what about your LinkedIn account? You probably access these from work, but they don't use your SSO. That means there's more passwords to remember and more opportunities for your accounts to become compromised.
  • Intranet: This is a good alternative for sharing passwords among a group. An intranet is internal and typically locked down by IP address, meaning you have to be at the office or remotely connected in order to access the information. But my guess is that you're logging into this intranet with a password stored in one of the previously mentioned "not so safe" ways.
  • Password Manager App: Now we're getting some place safe! A password manager allows you to store logins including passwords and even standard form field information in a secure way. You only need 1 password or your master password to login to a password manager app. So instead of trying to remember which of your standard combinations of passwords is needed to login to a site or app, you can let the Password Manager handle it for you. Bonus: it will even create new passwords for you so you aren't using a common password across multiple sites.

Since I titled this post, Password Managers, let's dive more into the options available to you. During my impromptu office survey, I found two applications that kept popping up, LastPass and 1Password. Both are great options and you probably couldn't go wrong with using one of these over those sketchy methods I mentioned earlier.


LastPass is a LogMeIn company (they also own GoToMeeting, Join.Me and many others so they know a thing or two about keeping businesses connected) with over 70,000 businesses using their service and 25.6 million users. They offer 3 single user/family plans (one of which is FREE!) and 4 business plans, so there's a level for every one or every organization. LastPass allows you to store not only passwords but other information like banking information, credit cards, documents and more. With their browser extension and mobile app you can access your information from practically anywhere.

LastPass - accessible from any device

Jared, a JH Program Manager, had this to say about LastPass: "When it comes to password managers this one makes it easy to use. It stays out of the way when you do not need it and is there when you do. I find that is is easy to search for the passwords and a nice add was that it picked up all my Google Chrome saved passwords, so I didn't have to start from scratch."


1Password is used by more than 60,000 businesses and is used by some of the largest corporations in the world, like IBM, and has over 15 million users. They offer 2 personal/family plans and 3 business plans. Just like LastPass you can store not only your logins, but additional information and documents.

1Password example

James, a JH Senior Developer, is a 1Password user, "I appreciate having desktop and mobile apps that are well designed, easy to use and offer a consistent offline experience when needed - and of course their proven security for all of my data."

You're on board with a password manager, great! 

But remember the key here is having a master password to access your information. This means you need one really secure password. Your name, birthday, the word password, and anything else listed on this top 200 passwords from 2019 list shouldn't be used. 

Incorrect Password meme

Using a phrase intermixed with special characters is something you are likely to remember, especially since you only need to remember a single password now. Now it's time to go forth and have password security ... good luck my friend!