Tech Tip Tuesday – Password Storage

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Hi.  Eric Murcia here with another episode of Tech Tip Tuesday brought to you by Pit Crew.  Today we’re going to talk a little bit about password storage.  I know we’ve done some blog posts on passwords, and we’ll throw a link up to that as well because there’s been some changes in what’s considered a secure password now and what’s not anymore.  But all that information is available in our blog.  I didn’t want to get too into that right now.  What I really wanted to talk about was password storage.

Unencrypted Password Storage

I’ve seen people store passwords in Word documents and Excel files and things like that.  While that’s great, you know we’re storing it somewhere.  We have so many passwords, that’s why we’re having to do that.  It’s only been very recently that versions of Microsoft even encrypted those password-protected files we would store them in.  So what that means is if you’re running an older version of Office, and you’re password-protecting your file, doing your due diligence, while that’s great, it’s not actually encrypting that file.  So if that file falls into the wrong hands, basically they have full access to all those passwords.

Password Storage Applications

That’s where applications like LastPass [come in], and I only point out LastPass because we use it here across our teams.  It works great.  There’s a lot of other applications out there that do the same thing.  I’m not saying you have to go run out and subscribe to LastPass.  But this one, we’ve tested.  It works phenomenally on Windows computers, Mac computers, iPhones.  It pretty much works on everything, and it’s really never let us down.

LastPass, if you’re a subscriber, stores all your passwords in this really cool online format that’s available on all your mobile devices, all your systems that you have.  All you have to do is come in here, and log in, and see those passwords.  You can even lock down passwords where only certain members of your team can access those passwords.  Maybe you let them use them, but they can’t actually see what the password is.  It just keeps things extra-secure.

Additional LastPass Features

There’s also the ability to create secure notes, secure form fills.  There’s a whole lot of neat features built into LastPass to really store your passwords safe, securely, in the cloud.  Not on your computer at home.  And make them readily accessible and available to you no matter where you’re at.

One last quick thing about LastPass and other applications like this that are really neat is the ability for you to go to a website or open an application that you have a username and password for.  If you see, LastPass immediately recognized that I have an Alarm.com account saved inside of it.  It went ahead and populated my credentials for me to log in.

Closing Thoughts on Password Storage

It’s a really good thing to have to store your passwords securely.  It’s in the cloud.  It’s available on all your devices.  This is really the route that we recommend people go, and shy away from having Excel and Word documents and things like that, or sticky notes on your monitor.

That’s all I have for you this week.  I look forward to talking to you again next Tuesday.

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