Internet security is one of those topics that you can’t talk about enough. Almost every web site you visit is going to require you to create a password at one point or another. Most of the people I meet and talk with about it are using one, or one of a few passwords, as they troll across the web. It’s not that people aren’t concerned about keeping their personal data safe, but rather how do they deal with the problem in an effective manner?
This is where Agile Web Solution’s 1Password comes in. I started using it a couple of years ago and it is one of the apps that I open every day on my Mac. The premise of 1Password is simple; it helps you create, store, and organize passwords for all of your various website logins. Right now, I have 169 website passwords. These sites are just like yours: banking, news, forums, and email. If I were managing these on my own, I’d have about 4 passwords that I use regularly. This is not a good habit.
1Password has several tools to help you create and store website passwords. It integrates with all of the major browsers for Apple through a context menu, or a key icon in the menu bar. When creating a new password you call up 1Password and choose the Strong Password Generator function. When you’re saving your new passwords you can use folders and/or tags to organize them. It doesn’t just do passwords either. You can create identities to auto-fill forms online with contact and banking info—securely, and without a lot of typing! Finally, and one of my favorite features, you can even integrate all of your Mac’s applications license and registration information. In one app that costs $40 (family and student licensing available) you’ve got a solid and reliable solution to making your Internet life secure and manageable.
Now that I’ve covered the main features of 1Password I want to make sure to mention the interface. Agile Web Solutions has developed a beautiful UI for this app that’s not only easy on your eyes, but is quite intuitive.
All of this discussion about this great Mac desktop app inevitably leads to the question about how do I take my passwords with me? First, you can sync this database securely to the web using 1PasswordAnywhere. If you have an iPhone, iPod Touch, and Palm OS you can download an app for native support on your device. Check out 1Password and 1Password Pro on iTunes. The free version will meet most peoples’ needs, but the Pro has a few added creature comforts some will find indispensable (it’s also free for a limited time, so don’t lollygag on this special. The free version can be used as a standalone app, but if you want to take advantage of some of the Pro features (like folders), you’ll need to have the desktop app for your Mac.
The mobile apps are protected by dual-layer password security
Don’t waste any more time leaving your Internet security to your fallible brain and Post-it notes! Go to 1Password’s site and download a 30-day, fully functioning demo to try it out. Get the app for your iPhone! Create monster passwords of superfluous security without worrying about how you’ll remember them! Have a blast with your important information!