Friday, August 1, 2008

Too many passwords?

Gina Trapani, Wiley author of Upgrade Your Life, was asked (among other things):

Q. Do we need a system for managing all of life’s various passwords, and if so, what do you recommend?
A. Here’s the quandary: you should use different, unique passwords for everything you log into, but remembering those passwords can be impossible. Like any information you want to easily recall without having to memorize it, having a secure parking place for passwords is key. I use a program called KeePass, which is free and compatible with both Mac and PCs. It’s a secure database where you can store all your passwords — WiFi networks, Windows and PC passwords, bank PIN numbers — and even arrange them into folders. There’s one master password that you have to remember that unlocks it all. To get started, you could just input those passwords you know you’re not going to use too often but might need three months from now. Firefox (and most other browsers) can save Web page passwords and I use that a lot to save time. But Firefox can’t save, say, your WiFi password or your bank’s PIN. KeePass is like a backup to Firefox.

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