Password security 101: Why you need a password manager and how to select one

Zoho Vault - Password Security 101

Like it or hate it: passwords are here to stay. They are still one of the most easiest and affordable methods of user authentication available to us now. New authentication methods like hardware-based authentication, passwordless, fingerprint, and face-scanning technologies are complex to implement and it can be hard to drive adoption among users. Of course, we all know the challenges we face with password-based authentication.

Zoho Vault - Password Security 101

Common challenges associated with passwords:

  • Forgetting passwords often
  • Using easy to guess passwords (pet’s names, date of birth, anniversary date, etc.)
  • Reusing the same password for multiple accounts
  • Storing passwords insecurely (on sticky notes, spreadsheets, etc.)
  • Sharing passwords via email, chat, and verbally
  • Keeping passwords unchanged for years
  • Not changing passwords after a data breach

Get the help of a password manager

In simple words, a password manager is something like a digital vault where you can store all your passwords, documents, bank account details, and access them with a master password that only you know. In addition to the secure storage functionality, it also helps you to generate strong and unique passwords for each account, automatically fill them in your login screens, and also allows you to share them safely.

Most password managers today offer browser extensions and mobile apps that sync across devices and allow you to manage your passwords from anywhere. With a password manager, you can say goodbye to all your password challenges and keep hackers at bay. Cool, right?

Some of you might think, “But what if someone gets my master password or the password manager gets breached?” Both questions are reasonable and good to address. It’s recommended to use a strong yet memorable master password with two-factor authentication configured for your password manager. This way, you can ensure your account is secure and the rest of your passwords are protected from unauthorized access. For the second question, we recommend you use a password manager that offers zero-knowledge architecture, AES-256 encryption, and security specifications published transparently on their website.

 Now, let’s look at how to select a good password manager.

Selecting the right password manager

We have created a detailed, unbiased checklist of must-have and good-to-have features to look for when selecting a password manager. Zoho Vault, our password management app, checks all these boxes, but you can also do your own research to compare it with any password manager of your choice.

Must-have

Features

Zoho Vault

Vendor B

Vendor C

Zero-knowledge architecture and AES-256 encryption

Yes

 

 

Store unlimited passwords

Yes

 

 

Cross-platform support

Yes

 

 

Sync across multiple devices

Yes

 

 

Password generator

Yes

 

 

Multi-factor authentication

Yes

 

 

Secure password sharing

Yes

 

 

Browser extensions and mobile apps

Yes

 

 

Audits and reports

Yes

 

 

Security specification published

on the website

Yes

 

 

Technical assistance

Yes

 

 

Good-to-have

Features

Zoho Vault

Vendor B

Vendor C

Powerful admin controls

Yes

 

 

Import passwords from browsers, spreadsheets, and other products

 Yes

 

 

Cloud backup

Yes

 

 

Alerts and notifications

Yes

 

 

Automatic password reset

Yes

 

 

Password request-release workflow

Yes

 

 

Integration with HelpDesk and SIEM

Yes

 

 

Integration with G Suite and Office 365

Yes

 

 

Integration with AD/LDAP

Yes

 

 

Emergency access/inheritance

Yes

 

 

Acquire passwords from team members

Yes

 

 

Single sign-on/SAML

Yes

 

 

We hope this gives you a better understanding of why we all need to use a password manager and shows you how to select one for you or your business. If you are already using a password manager, use our checklist to compare your tool against Zoho Vault.

If you’re interested in trying Zoho Vault, you can get started with our 14-day free trial. If you have any questions or feedback about Zoho Vault, do not hesitate to contact us. You can write to support@zohovault.com or share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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