Today is World Password Day! Think about this for a second…

Why is there a World Password Day? The answer is that the one of the best lines of defense against cyber threats is to have unique strong passwords. Everyday we see stories about people and businesses being scammed and hacked and this is only going to increase unless we all empower ourselves to start fighting back. To protect yourself your password must be a minimum of 12 characters including upper and lower case, numbers, and symbols. I personally prefer at least 15 to 20 characters. You can use a Password Manager to generate these passwords for you or you can create such a password by picking a favorite movie title, song lyric or saying and then make it random like this, Th30n!yt41ngW3Hav3Tof3ar!sF3ar1ts3f. I used the quote “The only thing you have to fear is fear itself “to create this password.

I was a panelist at an event last week and was asked a common question many people ask, “how am I going to remember so many unique long passwords? It’s not practical.” The answer is a Password Manager. A Password Manager can generate, store and even autofill strong passwords for you, so that you do not have to remember every unique password you have. I think of a Password Manager as the “one ring” in Lord of the Rings, just like the story where you have one ring to rule them all, a Password Manager has one password to control access to all your other passwords. This means that you only must remember and protect the one strong password that you have, to access your Password Manager system instead of multiple passwords. The follow up question I got was “but what if my Password Manager gets hacked?” While I would not rule out anything when it comes to the hacking capabilities of the army of cyber criminals we are up against, the alternative of not having a Password Manager is that you are going to be an easier target for hackers. In summary, Password Managers are like digital guardians, keeping your accounts secure and providing you more protection against having all your accounts hacked.

There are many Password Managers on the market today and some of them offer a free subscription. I have decided to share with you my top three picks, but encourage you to do your own research and figure out what works best for you.

1Password: I like this system because it offers great features such as two-factor authentication, dark web monitoring and a built-in authenticator. It also has strong security features such as Watchtower, which audits your password security regularly.

Dashlane: This system provides robust features, including dark web monitoring and VPN for secure internet searching. It’s popular for its usability across multiple devices.

Bitwarden: This system is popular because it has a generous free plan and while it may not be as fancy as the other two, I have listed but it is secure and effective and does include passkey support. Furthermore, its premium plan is very affordable.