Password pains

The Heartbleed hack has made me very aware that my passwords need an overhaul, stat! Because they’re getting hard to remember with enough variety between services, I’m planning to move to a password management service at the same time.
The Lifehacker crowd give some great advice on how to manage passwords, but I’d love to know what your experience is. Have you used a password manager before? How convenient are they? Is something extra like Yubikey worth the effort?
And if you’re a friend or family member who’s thinking about doing something similar but you’re finding it intimidating, let me know. I’m happy to spend an hour or two working it through with you once I’ve figured out how this all works. Plus, you can expect a write-up on here, of course.

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6 thoughts on “Password pains

  1. J says:

    It seems to me that it’s just another avenue for hacking. Maybe it’sbest to be self-reliant with managing our passwords.

    • The difference here is that if we’re self-reliant with passwords, they have to either be memorable (and thus more easily hackable because they fall within the category of phrases that people find memorable – this is why we all groan when a hack is made public and the most common password turns out to be ‘password’…still).
      If we trust a password manager with less important passwords, the overall risk is less (the password manager’s all about security and is relatively obscure, so it’s less likely to be hacked than a major site like Facebook), but we can use completely random passwords, so they’re stronger against most forms of hacking.
      That said, I’ll still be relying solely on my memory for my three big passwords: email, bank and my work system.

  2. Daniel O'Brien says:

    Lastpass. Lastpass is awesome. I cannot recommend them highly enough. $12 a year if you want to use their mobile apps, free for browser extensions and desktop app. Janicos also swears by them.

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