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What Does A Password Manager Do?

January 20, 2021

With all the logins come strong passwords that you will need to remember. A password manager will take a load off your mind by remembering all of them, so you don’t have to.

Using a password manager is simple. Just as before when you need to login to a website, you will visit the website normally. However, instead of typing in your password for that account, you type your master password into the password manager, which automatically fills the appropriate login info into the website. If you’re already logged into your password manager it will automatically fill the data in. Using a password manager means you no longer have to think about what email address, username, and password have been used for that website.

A password manager can also generate secure, random passwords for you, so you don’t have to, as well as automatically filling in info like your name, address, credit card numbers and email for web forms. They also protect against phishing websites because they autofill info based on the website URL. If you believe you are on the correct website and your info does not get filled in, it is possible you could be on a phishing website.  A password manager will also allow you to access your passwords easily across different computers, smartphones, and tablets.

Many web browsers including Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, and others have integrated password managers, but here is why you shouldn’t use them.

Web browsers such as Chrome and Internet Explorer store your passwords on your computer in an unencrypted form. If your computer is hacked, the hacker may be able to access the passwords unless you encrypt your computer’s hard drive.  While Firefox is preferable because it saves passwords in an encrypted format, it still is not ideal because it won’t generate random passwords and it can’t sync across platforms (Firefox can’t sync to iOS devices).

To learn why you might need a password manager, read our previous blog: Is It Time for a Password Manager? To learn about which password manager might be best for you, read Which Password Managers Are Best Suited for You?

So you’ve decided a password manager is the best step for you, but which one should you use?  Check out our next blog post on good options for password managers. 

Davis & Hodgdon Associates CPAs has been assisting individuals and businesses throughout Vermont and New England for more than 30 years so please reach out to us in Williston (802-536-1831) or Rutland (802.775.7132) to talk with a tax professional today to be sure you are ready for the April 15 tax deadline! You can also email us at info@dh-cpa.com.

Resource: Why You Should Use a Password Manager, and How to Get Started