Password managers have become an essential tool in our digital world today. The convenience and protection you get from a password manager makes it a game changing tool in terms of security and being on the internet. Have you noticed how much time you spend in the digital world? Now, that can be from your laptop, computer, or mobile phone. It is not only the case with one or a few people, but it is something that is going on with almost every other person present around the world. While it may seem complex, there is no doubt in saying that this digitalization is bringing uncountable benefits for everyone who is a part of this digital world.
However, there are some difficulties as well, and one of the most important things from the list of difficulties is to ensure safe passwords. You need stronger passwords for better security, but they are not easy to remember. Similarly, weaker passwords are easy to remember, but the security levels are bad.
You might be thinking about what could get worse. Creating a password and using it everywhere is the worst thing that could happen, and sadly most of us do it.
What is a Password Manager?
With passwords being the only shield between your account and everyone else, you need your passwords to be as secure and hard to crack as possible. Creating long passwords with random letters and numbers may be strong, but remembering different account passwords is hard.
This is why a password manager can be your best buddy because it is a tool that comes with the following functionalities:
- Creating hard to crack passwords
- Remembering different passwords for different accounts
- Providing easy log-in feature
- Allows usage on different devices and many more
It means that you only need to remember one password, and that will be for your password manager. All other responsibilities like security and ease of usage will be up to the password manager.
A very interesting thing about password cracking is that most of the password cracking algorithms use words or phrases that we commonly use, but password managers create random passwords. In this way, cracking them within a lifetime is almost impossible.
Things you must consider when choosing the best password manager
With all of these amazing functionalities, you might be attracted to buying your password manager service right now. However, things are not as simple as you might be thinking them to be. Selecting a password manager or platform can be a tricky thing, and there are many things that you need to consider.
Some important factors that you must consider when choosing your password manager are discussed below:
Security stays on top with any chosen password manager
The first thing that we have on our list is security. We are talking about the security of your passwords and the security of the platform itself. You will find out that most of the platforms are based on cloud servers. Some are also present on the vaults that are present on your device.
Whatever the type of backend for that password manager is, you must consider its security when selecting it. You can consider your preferences whether you want an online cloud-based tool or a tool that is present on your device. At the same time, you must consider how easy it is for someone else to break into that tool.
Up to date password manager with the latest techniques implemented makes the best choice
The next things that you must consider checking are the techniques and encryption methods used by the password manager tool. Most times, a tool is perfect in terms of features and functionalities, and it gets the job done. However, you must look out for the security measures the password manager functions with.
Hackers and the bad actors are always searching for newer ways to break into different systems, and the systems with outdated backend systems are the most vulnerable. However, if the platform is based on the latest security techniques, then breaking into it will not be that easy, and that is what you want.
Password manager compatibility matters a lot whether you speak of hardware or software
This is the era where digital products surround us. We are sitting in front of our computers all day while the mobile phone stays in our pockets and there is a smart wristwatch working as another computer. This is just the beginning of this list, and if we start counting things, the list keeps on getting longer.
Now you want all of your devices to be secure, and this is exactly what you are getting your password manager tool for. So, one functional requirement will be that your password manager tool is compatible with all of your devices.
Meaning that if you store your Netflix password on the password manager from your desktop system, you must be able to access it and use it on your laptop, phone, tablet, and all other devices you own.
Your password manager must make things easy for you instead of making them complex
If you take a look at the main idea of password managers, it is to bring better security and a better user experience. From user experience point of view, it is meant that the user does not have to remember all the different passwords. Similarly, there is no need to manually enter a password every time you are going to access some website.
So, the best way of checking if your password manager tool is going to make things easy for you is to look at the features available with it. Having the following features in your password manager tool will make your life easier:
- Browser extensions (they usually work amazing for desktop and laptop computers)
- Biometric login (it eases things a lot for all the devices with biometrics like phones, laptops, and tablets)
- Automatic response (This is amazing because you only open a website, and the password manager tool will automatically fill in all the required fields.
These factors ensure that your password management is ensured and there are no complexities that you have to deal with. Getting convenience and better experience with a password manager is essential, especially for people who regularly use different websites, and must keep passwords secure.
A feature that is also worthy of note is that, if you change your passwords from time to time, your password manager keeps them updated.
Additional features in a password manager always add up to the value that you get
Using a password manager tool is not only about getting the basic features only, If you look for additional features, you will definitely find several companies providing additional features.
However, when looking for additional features, you must be concerned about your security more than anything else. With security being your major concern, some of the additional features that you can look for are:
- Two Factor Authentication or Multi-Factor Authentication
- Ability to Share passwords with trusted people like family members
- Getting notified if your passwords have been compromised
- Emergency access to specific people
Getting all of these features from the password manager that you select, means that you will have an amazing experience.
Your browser is not your best password manager
There are many people who think that they can use their browser as their password manager. Well, it might be the case for some people but not for all. Whenever you enter a password on a browser, there is a popup that asks to save the password. If you click yes, then that password is saved with your account, and whenever you need to use that website again, the browser will automatically fill in the user name and password.
It may be a convenient choice to some extent, but below are the reasons why you must not rely on this:
- Your browser is not the most secure option for saving your passwords. If someone accesses your browser and views the passwords stored on it, then you can be in trouble.
- If you are going for this option because you only use one device, then what are your plans when you upgrade to some other device or your number of devices increases? In that case, you need a password manager.
- Some browsers are not compatible with all devices, while some people use different browsers on different devices based on the user experience. This also increases the overall restrictions.
Well, this list of reasons keeps on expanding, so the right choice is to go for a password manager instead of using this feature, although it is useful but only to a certain extent.
Do your research before anything else
Now that you know all of the important things that must be considered when selecting a password manager, you might be thinking that you are ready to make the final decision. However, it would help if you still did some research about a lot of things. Some of these are discussed below.
The number of devices you own and use
The first thing you need to be careful about is the number of devices you will be using with your password manager. Most of us have different working systems, for example:
- A workstation at the office
- A workstation at home
- A laptop for remote working
- Tablet computer for entertainment purposes
- Mobile phones and a lot more
The thing about password managers is that there is no going back once you start using one. In this digital world of convenience, you might not want to have all of your devices being conveniently managed, while for one of your devices, you need to enter the passwords manually.
For that, you must consider your number of devices. Considering one or a few above, the actual number of devices is a great thing if the services still fall under your budget and you are thinking of upgrading.
Types of devices
Another important thing you need to do your research about is the type of devices that you use. This is very necessary because of the type of devices password managers support.
For example, some tools are only available for mobiles, while others are only available in the Apple ecosystem.
When you consider the type of devices you use and the devices supported by the password managers, things will be pretty easy for you when it comes to the selection process. Some of the device types are:
(1) Mac desktop and laptops
(2) Windows desktop and laptops
(3) Linux desktop and laptops
(4) Apple tablets
(5) Android tablets
(6) Apple iPhones
(7) Android phones
(8) Smart televisions
So, make sure to keep track of these types when selecting your password manager.
Do you need to share anything?
While most of the users out there are using and managing their accounts alone. It is not the case with everyone out there. Some users do not use their accounts all alone. Either their partners use their accounts or their employees, or sometimes colleagues use the same account. In that case, sharing features is necessary in password manager of choice.
This is something that every service provider does not provide. So, when you are selecting a password manager, make sure to check for this feature. Things like sharing passwords in emergency scenarios are also important features to look out for.
Anything else that you may need
What are your requirements about the additional features that you can get? Do you need any additional features apart from password management from the same password manager? Asking yourself the answers to these questions is important.
For example, there could be a case where you want to know about your online presence, or you might be looking for password strength tellers or password replacement notifiers. There are countless features that you can be looking for. Making a list of all such features can bring a lot of ease to your life.
Price will be the final determining factor
The last thing that you need to research on is the price. You must be aware that these premium password managers come at a cost, and you have to pay that cost. So, managing your budget and making sure you get the best value is essential.
Why is having a password manager necessary?
Taking a look at the digitalization happening in our world, you can observe that it is happening at exponential rates. It means that you might be signing up with several different websites in the coming weeks, months, and years. More platforms to sign up with means that there will be more security issues. So, more hard and secure passwords to create and remember. It means that using password managers is necessary today.
There is a long list of reasons for this, and some of these reasons are mentioned below:
- Creating passwords that cannot be easily cracked
Password managers help you in creating passwords that are not easy to crack with hacking algorithms. In this way, your overall security is enhanced.
- Using your preferred passwords
Having a password manager does not restrict you from using the password it generates. It is also possible to use a password of your own choice.
- Instant access
Having password managers does not require you to go through a list of passwords every time you are looking to log in somewhere. It provides instant access, which makes the whole process convenient. Moreover, this instant access is available on all of your devices.
- Stays secure anywhere, anytime
One of the biggest reasons you need password managers today is that we live a fast-paced life. Sometimes we need to remotely access something even when we do not have our computer around.
Password managers bring amazing benefits in that type of situation by using only one secure password that can be used to access all of your other passwords. This also, not causing any security, location, or time issues.
Password managers for sure are an essential tool today. Whether you are a businessman, an employee somewhere, or a random person who uses the internet for informational and entertainment purposes. There are huge chances that you have some information related to your accounts that you do not want anyone else to access. This is the reason you create strong passwords that are also hard to guess.
All of these can be easily taken care of with the help of a passwords manager tool. However, it does not mean that you can go for any of the password managers out there. It is important to go for an option that is reliable and comes with the right set of features to meet all of your requirements.
If you are also confused about selecting the right password managers for you, you can follow the instructions shared here for the best experience.