This is going to sound crazy, but I only know two passwords: one to get into my two-factor authentication device (Google Authenticator) and one to get into LastPass. We discussed two-factor authentication in our last post, and now I’d like to tell you why using passwords is going to be a thing of the past.
The tech community is already looking forward to the day when we can stop using unsecure methods to access our data. (For more information about this, read “Kill the Password” (Wired, November 15, 2012). Helping us get there is LastPass, a program that generates and stores secure passwords.
Thanks to LastPass, you never use the same password twice, and you always have a hard-to-crack password. But do you know what the best part about LastPass is? You guessed it—LastPass uses two-factor authentication. Not only do I need my password, but I also need my cell phone to access my password.
Once LastPass has been authenticated—go to Account Settings > Multifactor Options on the LastPass site to do that—you can have it remember the computer you regularly use for up to 30 days at a time. Thereafter, simply go to Account Settings > trusted Computers to reauthenticate your registration.
Using LastPass means that, even if you lose your computer, people still can’t access your passwords. I recommend using the Security Settings “Automatically Logoff when browsers are closed” and “Automatically Logoff after idle (mins).” By doing that, when you step away from your computer, your passwords are still safe. Combine LastPass, two-factor authentication, and Google Chrome (which needs two-factor authentication to load your profile), and your data is about as safe as it can be!
There may be a learning curve to “unlearn” your old habits, but once you’re on board with two-factor authentication and LastPass, you’ll help put passwords in the past.