Avira has recently updated its Avira Password Manager software, dedicated to cleaning up the confusing mess of passwords and account login details: making passwords more secure, easier mobile autofill capabilities, instant alerts for stolen personal data, and still completely for your eyes only.
Unless you are a savant, blessed with an incredible memory for random combinations of numbers, letters, and symbols—you are probably not exercising good password management. It simply is not possible for most people to remember a collection of truly secure passwords for their bank, social media, and other online accounts.
Bad password management is much more than a lost sticky note. Weak and stolen passwords are leveraged in 81% of all data theft.* Although people know that weak and recycled passwords leave them vulnerable to brute force attacks and “credential stuffing” attacks where hackers try out known username and password combinations, more than 60% of device users share the same password across multiple accounts and many choose easy-to-guess passwords.
Can’t Remember Your Passwords?
The reason is that many people are afraid they will forget their important passwords so they choose something easy to remember—and use it everywhere. Avira research found that the 52% of the respondents admitted to forgetting a password monthly and having to select a new one. To combat these memory issues, respondents frequently wrote the passwords down on a piece of paper (34%), recycled passwords between sites (27%), and simplified the passwords to make them easier to remember (13%). While only 11% admitted to using a simple number or key sequence such as “12345” or “asdf” in their passwords, 26% admitted to using the same root password—and just adding something to it as needed—leaving them vulnerable to brute force attacks.
Recent data collected by IBM Security shows that the younger you are, the more likely you are to use fewer and less secure passwords. For example, the younger Generation Z (age 18-24) is using an average of just 5 passwords, but only 39% are bothering to make a secure password with a mix of characters, symbols, and capitalization, and a huge 42% are reusing passwords between their various accounts. This “always online” generation should know better. Their elders (age 55+) have an average of 12 passwords in their day-to-day regime. Almost half are making the effort to create a complex password and only 31% say they reuse passwords between accounts.
“I have 219 combinations of users names and passwords for different web-sites I use every day. Being in the security industry I know how dangerous using the same combination or easy passwords can be, as the username is quite often the same email address,” said Travis Witteveen, Avira CEO. “An effective password manager, not just ensures I have a unique combination, but it also warns me if a site has been compromised and my credentials may be at risk. Since the new autofill functionality on iOS, it has never been easier to keep my login credentials with me, regardless of the device I’m using.”
Hands off my passwords
On the other hand, survey respondents have a specific list of demands for what a password manager should do. A near majority (48%) saw a password manager simply as a storage area for their sensitive passwords, but a significant number (31%) also thought a password manager should control the quality of their passwords. In addition, 25% of all respondents thought a password manager is something where “nobody but me” should access the saved and encrypted passwords.
Password management that goes beyond the password
“A password manager should do much more than simply remember passwords,” said Tim Gaiser, Director Identity Protection at Avira. “A good password manager does three primary things: keeps all passwords safe and accessible on all my devices, takes over the problem of creating and remembering unhackable passwords for all my accounts, and clarifies my online security with tips and alerts in case of potential data breaches.”
1. Keep that password secure (and all to yourself)
Avira Password Manager only needs you to set a single Master Password and it will take care of the rest: helping import existing passwords, creating new secure ones, and syncing this data between the your devices.
You are the only person who knows the Master Password; even Avira has no access to it. With the two-factor authentication for your Avira account, passwords are secured even more.
2. Improve yourself with Security Status
The new Security Status feature provides a complete picture of your online security. The Security Status flags your attempts to recycle passwords and grades passwords for their complexity and strength. You also get an automatic warning if your accounts have been hacked or passwords have been misused. Thanks to Avira’s deep knowledge of infected sites, you are alerted before you can enter your private data into a hacked or deceptive website.
3. Make it easy to act securely
Avira Password Manager makes it easy to act securely by placing all password-protected accounts in a single solution—regardless if you are on your PC or smartphone. The autofill function saves user time and slashes the number of potential data entry errors whether you are on a smartphone or home computer.
As a cloud-based solution, it works even if you are running a device based on Android, iOS, MacOS, or Windows operating systems. All changes made to the saved password data are automatically synced and accessible to other devices in the family network. User data can now be organized in tags. In addition to passwords, the app keeps other sensitive data secure, encrypted, and accessible—making it easier to log in to other websites and apps.
Step up into the Avira Password Manager
The basic Avira Password Manager is completely free. Avira Password Manager Pro comes with a wider range of features such as Security Status. Users can register or log in to the web dashboard and download the mobile solution and browser extensions (needed to enable autofill in web browsers) at: https://www.avira.com/en/avira-password-manager.