Possibly one of the biggest internet threats thus far the Heartbleed bug made everyone realize the obvious, that 100% security across the Internet is more of a fantasy than a reality. If you participated by making your own password updates after the Heartbleed bug hit, which hopefully you did, then you know how much of a hassle it can be to ensure all your passwords are strong, unique to each site and easily attainable. It actually can be so much of a headache that it seems unreasonable to have to do this, but we must. Luckily help is just a few clicks away.
The following list consists of some of the top password managers available today. These enable you to not only create strong passwords but to also store them in a central place making reviewing, updates and retrieval a cinch. I have included some information on their features, accessibility and cost where available to give you a snapshot of each of these services before you begin visiting their sites for more information.
LastPass’ premium edition is available on mobile platforms such as Android, Blackberry, IOS and Windows Phone. It offers 3 editions that you can choose from, a free edition, a premium edition for $12/year and an enterprise edition with pricing starting at $24/user for any number of users under 100. It utilizes AES 256-bit encryption with routinely increased PBKDF2 iterations and all sensitive data is encrypted and decrypted locally before syncing with LastPass. Once you add LastPass to your browser while you are surfing the web and logging into sites it offers to make this process simpler by generating strong unique passwords, auto-filling your login info and even shopping profiles so these normally somewhat tedious activities are now semi-automated. It includes the ability to segment your account so that you have for e.g. one for work and another for your personal logins plus the option to have both available at the same time. You can also opt to have it automatically log you in making time and effort to access your visited sites a non-issue. Learn more about LastPass
1Password, by AgileBits, offers strong security safeguards using tamper-proof authenticated encryption, AES-256 using Encrypt-then-MAC, GPU resistant PBKDF2-HMAC-SHA512 and also notes that decrypted data is never written to disk. It is available for Mac, Windows, IOS and Android. 1Password supports Internet Explorer, Safari, Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. You can have it automatically login for you on websites you need to access and it also offers you the option to save new logins you create while you are online. Its IOS versions support Touch ID with a cool opening animation of the vault unlocking. You are able to purchase a Mac + Windows bundle single license for $48.99 and a Mac or Windows only single license for $34.99. Learn more about 1Password
RoboForm is secured with military-grade AES 256 encryption and offers several additional security options. It integrates with IE, Firefox, Chrome on Windows and also with Chrome and Safari for Macs. It generates strong unique passwords and has the added feature of logging into more than one website at a time as well as protection you from phishing by only providing logins to sites where the correct domain is displayed. RoboForm offers an everywhere license, allowing you to login on all your computer and multiple devices for $9.95 for the first year (regularly $19.95). Single licenses are also available for Windows and Mac for $29.95/year. It also offers a RoboForm2Go option, which enables you to carry your logins, identities, bookmarks etc. on your USB to be used on any computer for $39.95. Learn more about RoboForm
Keeper is another good password manager. It is cross-platform compatible and integrates with, iPhones, iPads, iPod touch, Android phones and tablets, Windows Phone, Macs, PCs, Safari, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Kindle and Nook. To keep your information safe it uses a private encryption key, 256-bit AES data storage, PBKDF2 key generation, Perfect Forward Secrecy enforcement and two-factor authentication. It offers simple secure sharing with built-in PKI encryption, the ability to control “edit” and “view” permissions and the flexibility to share with one or more users and groups. Plans start at $9.95/year for individuals, $29.99/year for individuals with multiple devices and $299.99/year for office teams. Learn more about Keeper
It is important to note that there are several other good password managers on the market and this list is by no meant to be an exhaustive one. Do you have a favorite password manager that you use that isn’t on this list? Feel free to mention it in the comments along with why. If you do use one of these and like it then share the things you like most about it in the comments.
*Prices are as of the time of writing this post.