Password vaults help protect your digital life

Online managers keep all your user names and passwords in one secure spot

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How much con­ve­nience are you will­ing to give up to bet­ter pro­tect the pri­va­cy and secu­ri­ty of your fam­i­ly, and even the orga­ni­za­tions you’re involved with?

One small sac­ri­fice is to use a pass­word vault, also referred to as a pass­word man­ag­er. These ser­vices have been avail­able for some time, with com­par­a­tive­ly light adop­tion. How­ev­er, one lead­ing exam­ple, from Keep­er Secu­ri­ty, that’s very pow­er­ful, yet fair­ly intu­itive to use, is help­ing to change that.

Keep­er is a pass­word man­age­ment and file stor­age ser­vice orga­nized around putting all of your logons, for all of your web accounts—as well as logons to access sen­si­tive files—in one cen­tral location.

Relat­ed info­graph­ic: Amer­i­cans live with ‘data insecurity’

To use the ser­vice, you sim­ply put all your user names and pass­words for all of your online accounts into a dig­i­tal vault. Into this dig­i­tal vault you also can upload pho­to images of all your cred­it cards, images of your tax returns, and/or any oth­er sen­si­tive dig­i­tal files that should be for your eyes only.

Instead of try­ing to remem­ber weak pass­words for all of your web accounts, you rely on Keep­er to exe­cute all of your log-in pro­ce­dures with­in your dig­i­tal vault.

Keep­er secure­ly han­dles each logon, gen­er­at­ing a unique high-strength pass­word for each web account and each file you choose to store in your dig­i­tal vault.

The ben­e­fit is that no bad guy—or good guy, for that matter—can access the account infor­ma­tion and sen­si­tive files sit­ting inside your Keep­er dig­i­tal vault. That includes hack­ers, phish­ers and iden­ti­ty thieves. It also may restrict, some­what, the abil­i­ty for Google, Face­book, the Chi­nese and even the NSA from track­ing what you do on the Internet.

Darren Guccione, Keeper Security CEO
Dar­ren Guc­cione, Keep­er Secu­ri­ty CEO

You can use a very basic ver­sion of Keep­er for free. It enables you to store an unlim­it­ed num­ber of pass­words and oth­er items, but you can use it only on a sin­gle device, and tech sup­port is limited.

For $30 a year, you gain the abil­i­ty to sync your per­son­al pass­word vault across as many devices as you like. You also can back up files to the cloud and tap into chat-based tech sup­port. There’s a fam­i­ly plan that sets up vaults for up to five users for $60 per year. For

busi­ness­es, the enter­prise ver­sion starts at $750 a year for five employees.

Craig Lurey, Keeper Security CTO
Craig Lurey, Keep­er Secu­ri­ty CTO

The idea for Keep­er Secu­ri­ty occurred to CEO Dar­ren Guc­cione and CTO Craig Lurey on a long plane ride to Chi­na in 2008. Guc­cione and Lurey were on a busi­ness trip togeth­er. They start­ed to noo­dle an idea. At the time, the iPhone was a break­through device and the Apple Store didn’t have many secu­ri­ty apps to speak of. So Guc­cione and Lurey devot­ed the next two years to devel­op­ing their ser­vice, rolling out the ini­tial work­ing ver­sion in 2009.

Today Keep­er is com­pat­i­ble with Win­dows, Mac and Lin­ux oper­at­ing sys­tems and with all of the main browsers, includ­ing Google Chrome, Mozil­la Fire­fox, Apple Safari and Microsoft Inter­net Explor­er. It is avail­able on iPhone, Android and Win­dows phones, as well as on iPads and Android, Sur­face RT, Ama­zon Kin­dle Fire and Nook tablets.

Keep­er also can let you use your Apple Watch and Android Wear devices as login-ver­i­fi­ca­tion devices.

More sto­ries relat­ed to pass­word protection:
Cre­ate safer pass­words for all your online accounts
Base­ball hack­ing scan­dal points to need for pass­word protocol
Now’s the time to change all your pass­words, not just LinkedIn