Having logins to more than 500 websites and having to remember them all is no joke, you’d need some superhuman abilities for that. It’s one of those areas where I had to call on some software to help me out.
I started off using LastPass, and it served me well for a number of years. I was using it mostly as an individual on one laptop, but as my business grew I felt the need to share some of the logins with others. Obviously I don’t want to share all my logins so I needed software that allows easy organisation and sharing. Unfortunately LastPass, while having these features, has a really terrible UI. It has no native app for Mac OS, so I was stuck in their browser app which was painfully slow. I wasn’t going to be able to organize those 500+ logins anytime soon with LastPass.
Enter 1Password, an app with a really sleek UI that works perfectly for me. It stores its password vault locally on your laptop and if you need to use it from more than one device you can sync via Dropbox, which is ideal for me as I’m already a heavy Dropbox user. Now I can easily access my login data from my Macbook Air as well as the iPad. My wife can also access some of my logins through a shared vault. You can create many vaults in fact, and share only those you want. Within each vault, you can further categorize and tag logins, which gives me the right amount of organizational functionality that I need.
One great advantage of 1Password is two-factor authentication. Security-wise, the most important thing is to set a very secure Master password, as that is your weakest point when using 1Password. The password vault is stored on your Mac with 256-bit AES encryption, a standard used by financial institutions. Thus even if a thief steals your laptop or maybe your iOS device, unless the device still has 1Password in logged-in mode, they cannot access your passwords, since the vault is encrypted.
Now an additional security factor to consider comes into play when sharing vaults with others, as this is most commonly done via Dropbox.
Some points to consider in this case:
- Your master password is never transmitted from your computer or device.
- All 1Password decryption and encryption is performed on your computer or device.
- The 1Password data format was designed to withstand sophisticated attacks if it fell into the wrong hands.
- Dropbox provides an additional layer of encryption.
You can read more about how 1Password stores and encrypts its data here.
When you purchase 1Password you will usually purchase a desktop app for your laptop/pc and another app for your mobile phone. The price for the mac app is $64.99 but the iOS app with basic features is free. There is also the pro upgrade for the iOS app which gives you the following:
- Apple Watch support — It’s 1Password on your wrist. Quickly look up credit cards, garage door codes, and more.
- Store two-factor authentication (TOTP) codes — No need to use a separate app or text messages for your 2FA codes.
- View attachments — Keep passport photos, PDF documents, and receipts safely in your vault. Access them with a single tap.
- Stay organized with tags — Tag items you carry in your wallet, so you can quickly look up your credit card numbers and rewards cards.
- Add custom fields – You know those annoying security questions? Now you can record your answers to them in 1Password.
- Add multiple URLs – If one site has multiple login pages, save time and effort by creating a single item that works with all of them.
- Multiple vaults — Connect to as many existing vaults on Dropbox as you want.
- Create items in additional categories — Wireless Routers, Software Licenses, and more!
All in all the price is right for me, happy to pay for the value that this app provides.
1Password for Families
1Password can also be purchased in family version, which is a subscription based service. You don’t purchase the software directly but you purchase a subscription to 1Password. The company will then charge you once a month for using their password management service.
The price of 1Password for Families is $5/month which gives you up to 5 users.
Why subscribe instead of buying the 1Password apps individually? For starters, all apps come free with your subscription and can be shared with your whole family. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg: 1Password Families is a fully hosted service designed for people who use 1Password together. Syncing, sharing, and management capabilities are all built-in. Inviting family members is as simple as sending them an email.
What if you have more than five people in my family? That’s not a problem at all. You can invite as many family members as you need for an additional $1 per person/month.
Here are a few of the great things 1Password for Families can do:
- It would be great if I didn’t have to purchase and manage licenses for everyone in my family.
- When I change the Netflix password, it would be awesome if everyone in my family got it automatically in a secure fashion.
- A simpler setup would help my uncle use 1Password as he’s not very technical and has trouble setting up sync.
1Password for Families makes all these things easy. I simply send my family an email to invite them. Sync is built in and just works. And my whole family can use 1Password on a single subscription.
1Password also has a business version in 1Password Teams. This is the ideal solution to use if you want to manage all your company’s logins across a number of team members.
1Password Teams gives you full control over who has access to your team’s most important information. Emailing passwords is just the tip of the bad-security iceberg. IM, post-it notes, broken telephone. They’re not safe, and they don’t scale. 1Password Teams makes it super simple and safe to share all those passwords with the whole office. Items show up on your teammates’ devices automatically, so no one has to worry about staying in sync.
Do you use a password manager? I’d love to know about your experiences with password management software, and which one you ended up choosing.