4-Step Computer Security Upgrade
Learn to encrypt your files, secure your computer when using public Wi-Fi, enable two-factor authentication, and use good passwords.
LastPass is a user-friendly password manager with great functions and it is a dream to use. For only $1 per month you can have access to its full functionality (free access does not provide the smartphone integration), and all of its time- and energy-saving features that makes the use of strong, secure passwords a breeze. Admittedly, it is a bit similar to KeePass. LastPass does KeePass one better, though, due to its fantastic integration into all your portals to the internet.
Like KeePass, LastPass provides a strong password generator, for which you can specify the password’s length and whether it uses special characters, capital letters, or numbers. Unlike KeePass, however, you always have access to your entire set of passwords online via the LastPass website. All you need to do is sign in with your email address and Master Password, and you can access those super strong passwords from any computer in the world. No more worrying about whether you can access your KeePass database on a foreign computer.
One of the best features of LastPass is its browser plugins, which are available for Firefox, Safari, Chrome, or Internet Explorer, and it works on both Mac and Windows machines.
Since LastPass syncs your account across all platforms, you can run it on multiple browsers at once, and always have immediate access to your user names and passwords. LastPass also recognizes when you have put in a password for a page it does not have recorded and asks if you want it to store the password. This is pretty handy because it then syncs that information across all plugins and online access to LastPass.
The browser plugin also makes note of websites for which you have multiple user names and passwords, and allows you to choose which account to use on that site from a simple drop-down menu that appears in a bar at the top of the screen. This is handy for those of you with multiple Gmail accounts, for instance, for which some people use separate personal and business addresses.
If you upgrade from the free account to the LastPass premium account (which is only $1 per month), LastPass will also sync with your smartphone via the free app for whatever platform you use. I have access to all my passwords on my iPhone via LastPass, so setting up Facebook and Tweetdeck on my new phone was slick when I needed to buy a new phone recently. Just select the item you want the password for, copy the password, and paste it into the app or browser window.
Once you have your LastPass account set up, your passwords strengthened, and your browser plugins installed, you can also use LastPass’s Auto Login feature, which allows you to specify for each site whether you want to be automatically logged in when you go to that page. I have this set up for a number of pages, including Freshbooks, so I just need to click on my bookmark to go there and I’m in.
In all, LastPass is great because of its ease of use and browser integration. I urge you try it immediately. (You can import your existing password data from your browsers or from other password managers like KeePass, so you don’t need to spend endless amounts of time migrating.)