PODCAST: Password managers…friend or foe?
If you ever want to conduct a rather frightening science experiment, download a password manager and ask it to pull out all cached and stored account information, logins and passwords from your browsers.
Go ahead…we’ll wait.
Chances are, if you’re like almost every other American, that password manager identified and secured more logins and passwords than you knew you had or could possibly have dreamed existed.
Americans rely on Chrome, Firefox, Safari and (shudder) Internet Explorer to store their passwords for them since it’s much easier than trying to remember them themselves. It’s also much more convenient to have these browsers auto-populate their login credentials than waste precious seconds typing them out.
Many that don’t trust their browsers to store their login credentials use those aforementioned password mangers to do it for them, instead. Password managers are third party applications that securely aggregate, remember and submit log-in credentials on behalf of the user. Some security experts praise them for enabling better cyber hygiene. However, not all security experts are sold on their ability to help protect users.
To get some more clarity into what password managers do and why security experts are split on their use, we sat down with a security expert of our own – Jeff Schmidt, the CEO of Authomate – to record a podcast. During our conversation, we asked Jeff why some experts think password managers are effective, why some discourage their use and what other alternatives exist.
Here is what Jeff had to say: