When was the last time you changed your social media or online banking passwords? Do you use the same password for more than one site and if you do, is it really that big of a deal? The simple answer is yes! According to The Harris Poll, 66% of Americans admit to using the same weak password across multiple sites, which could be detrimental if just one of these accounts is compromised. Google is here to help with their new Password Checkup tool that analyzes your saved passwords and tells you which ones need to be updated.
A lot of us are guilty of putting our personal information at risk for the convenience of not having to remember multiple passwords: myself included. We all keep using something like “Password123” until one day we hear about a data breach and then frantically rush to change all our passwords. At that point, unfortunately, it’s probably too late. To avoid this sort of scenario, we should all use a password manager and Google provides a very good, free one that is synced across Android and Chrome. Other third-party password manager like LastPass and 1Password can be used for a more elaborate password organization, but for the average person the Google password manager is more than sufficient. It has been a game-changer for me and is a breeze to use.
The new Password Checkup feature that Google released today is prominently displayed at the top of passwords.google.com, the online portal where you can use to view and manage your passwords saved with your Google Account. When you select the “Check passwords” button, the Password Checkup tool will analyze your saved passwords and tells you if any of your passwords have been compromised in a third-party breach, how many reused passwords you are using, and which passwords are considered weak.
Google says this new feature was born from their Password Checkup extension that was released earlier this year, which alerts you if your username and password have been compromised. Later this year, the company plans to build this technology directly into Chrome, so that you will get “real-time protection” without the need for an extension.
I look forward to the day when passwords aren’t necessary – something Google says they are working on – but for now, we should all take some time to protect our online information. Starting to use the Google Password Manager and running the Password Checkup is simple and will only take a couple of minutes to set up, but it could save you a lot of headache in the end.
SOURCE: The Keyword