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Top password managers compared

Maria Korolov | Feb. 3, 2015
Unless you're living off the grid in a cabin in the woods -- and, if you're reading this, you're probably not -- you have more passwords than you can manage. They're all supposed to be long, complicated, unique, and difficult to guess. Oh, and you're supposed to change them all every three to six months.

Unless you're living off the grid in a cabin in the woods — and, if you're reading this, you're probably not — you have more passwords than you can manage. They're all supposed to be long, complicated, unique, and difficult to guess. Oh, and you're supposed to change them all every three to six months.

The simple answer is to use a password management program. And, as the options below illustrate, there's a password manager out there for you regardless of your level of paranoia.

Plus, the leading options are getting pretty business-friendly, so if your company doesn't have a password management solution in place already, or is too small for one, then one of these password managers could do the job.

Dashlane

The best password manager on the market right now because of its ability to change most of your passwords with a single click, its support for-two factor authentication, and its business-friendly team functionality which allows password sharing with team members.

"Dashlane is a more recent arrival on the scene, but it gets a lot of praise in the SMB community for the user-friendliness of its interface," said Daniel Humphries, researcher at Software Advice, Inc., a Gartner company.

Dashlane costs $40 per year per user, but there's also a free version which works on one device.

"There are lots of options when it comes to password managers, and SMBs can decide whether they want to shell out major bucks for the deluxe versions or keep it free according to their own needs and priorities," said Humphries. "The good news is that you can do a lot with the free versions."

Dashlane's free version, for example, lets you try out its interface, including the password manager and the form auto-fill, and lets you share up to five logins.

Dashlane also has an emergency contact feature, so that someone you trust can step in and access all your accounts if something happens to you, plus a form filler so you don't have to type in your address all the time.

The ability to change all passwords with one click is currently unique to Dashlane, and covers more than 160 of the most popular sites, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Amazon, Dropbox, and Evernote — a useful feature if you think your accounts may have been compromised.

Password sharing allows you to control who has access to shared accounts, and revoke that access when needed. This is useful if there are multiple people with access to your company's social media accounts, for example.

Auto login works even with multi-page websites, such as bank sites. All passwords, auto-fill information, and notes are securely encrypted and saved where you choose — locally or to the cloud.

 

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