Password Managers; Why Your Team Needs One

password manager for teams - concept photo

Password insecurity is real. It may be happening on your team, putting your business at risk. 

In 2022, 24 billion passwords were compromised.

80% of breaches were related to a weak or stolen password.

Just take a look at this list of passwords that people still use today.  It’s a good thing password security has your attention.

image of text - list of banned words for secure passwords

Password Security Challenges

The first password security challenge is a common misconception with cyber threats. It’s the false beliefs such as “No one would target me” and “I don’t have anything of value in my email”.   Everyone is a target. Cyber threats are automated. we address this in our post titles Why Would Someone Want To Hack My Email and in our Password Security Guide for Small Business. Both are tools you can use to raise cyber awareness on your team.

Passwords are a hassle. We need them for every single online account. 

Nobody can remember the volume of randomly generated, strong, lengthy passwords we need in our digital lives today. It’s understandable that some people still use weak passwords (because they are easy to remember). Or reuse passwords for most accounts (perhaps not realizing they are putting them all at risk in the process).

Sharing passwords with staff makes things more complicated

Since we can’t get around them, and we want to keep our accounts safe, let’s explore the best way to securely share passwords with staff. Password managers can help.

What is a password manager?

Password managers are secure digital databases that store passwords for all your online accounts. You use a single master password to access your password manager. Within your password manager, you store login URL’s, user names and passwords for each of your online accounts.  The next time you visit the URL, your password manager will auto populate the login name and password for you.

Only needing to remember one secure password is a major benefit of password managers.

There are password managers well suited to personal use, business team use, and both.

Why Use Business Password Management Apps

Business password management apps have setups for separating work and personal passwords. They also have special administrative functions so companies never lose a critical password. 

Here at TUCU Managed IT Services in Toronto, we recommend password managers to our clients for better data security in small business.

Randomized Password Generator

Password managers often come with built-in password generators which can be used to create strong, complex passwords that are difficult to crack, for every account.

This eliminates the common practice of using weak passwords. As well as reusing passwords across many accounts. This feature mitigates the risk of security breaches.

As cyber security experts in Toronto, we have seen the fallout of weak passwords too often. It’s always a bad day when a new client is reaching out after an email is hacked and e-transfer fraud has cost them thousands. 

My personal password generator is set to create 24 character passwords for every account. You can improve your password security with a password manager too.

 

Centralized Password Management

The advantages of password managers include their ability to centralize password management.

This helps stop employees from using weak, repetitive passwords, as the built in password generators create strong,s ecure, randomly generated passwords.

This also helps stop staff from storing passwords in vulnerable places like email, plain text files, or in spreadsheets. Instead, a password manager stores all passwords in an encrypted vault.

The result is improved cyber security across all your business accounts, and streamlined password management.

Password Encryption

Leading password managers use end to end encryption to scramble and protect stored passwords.

Your passwords are stored and transmitted as unreadable text, making it very challenging for unauthorized users to get a hold of the information from storage or when sharing passwords with employees.

Secure Password Sharing

Some password managers have secure password-sharing features which allow administrators to share passwords with team members without revealing the actual password (the characters are hidden from view or the ability to copy and paste them).

This could be useful for banking logins on a small business team. 

That said, best practices in cyber security are clear – passwords should not be shared. Each user should have their own login to any accounts used for work. 

 

Audit Trail

Activity Monitoring is a valuable feature of a password manager for teams. It provides the ability for admins to track who accessed which passwords and when. This provides transparency and accountability within the organization.

This audit trail helps in identifying any suspicious activities. It also allows companies to take prompt action. This ensures the security of the shared passwords.

Password Managers Make Sense

They:

  • Centralize password management.
  • Encourage employees to use long, strong, unique passwords for every account.
  • Securely store all passwords.
  • Greatly improve cybersecurity.
  • Help protect your sensitive data.
  • Are affordable.

 

Do your research and choose a password manager with an excellent security reputation, or work with your IT provider to have your own private cloud hosting for your password manager. As a Managed Security Services Provider in Toronto, we can help you with your password manager setup and anything else you need for your data security. Get in touch today.

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