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Stop what you’re doing and download a password manager right now

Published Feb 9th, 2016 6:30PM EST
How to Use a Password Manager
Image: Dashlane

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Whether you know it or not, today is Safer Internet Day. That might sound like a silly, made up name for a random day in February, but rather than laugh it off, we might as well take the time we’d spend crafting some sarcastic tweet to actually make ourselves safer on the internet.

There are plenty of ways to do that — let’s focus on just one: Downloading a password manager.

READ MORE: How to get 2GB of free cloud storage from Google right now

We talked about password managers just last week when The Wall Street Journal published a extensive piece about staying safe from hackers, but let’s dive a little deeper into the subject for Safer Internet Day.

First off, there are plenty of options, all with their own strengths and weaknesses:

  • 1PasswordWe’ve harped on this one repeatedly over the years, and it’s only gotten better with time. One of the most popular password managers on the market, 1Password costs $49.99 for a lifetime license on Mac and PC, and is free to download on iOS and Android (although Pro features cost $9.99).
  • LastPass: This cloud-based option has been around for quite some time, but don’t let its age fool you. LastPass is one of the most robust password managers available, and the company offers plenty of compelling features for free. If you want to sync your passwords across all your devices, you can upgrade to Premium for $12 a year.
  • Dashlane: The last of the three I’ll mention, Dashlane offers some of the most visual pleasing apps of any manager. The company has also built in an automatic password changer so you’ll stay safe even when you aren’t diligent about updating your passwords. Like the others, Dashlane is free to download, but Premium will run you $39.99 a year.

Once you’ve chosen a password manager, it’s time to create a master password. It’s the only password you’ll ever need to remember (providing you use your manager correctly), so make it a good one.

From there, you’ll have the ability to change all of your oversimplified and constantly repeated passwords to make it that much harder for anyone to access your accounts. Best of all, there’s no risk, as a vast majority of password managers are free to download, so do yourself a favor and try one out today.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.