Trusting yourself and your employees to be smart about passwords might be tempting, but that can be risky. Research shows that weak password security is the number one factor behind data breaches.


According to a recent study by IBM, 19% of breaches were caused by stolen or compromised credentials in 2022. Even more alarming: Data breaches caused by stolen passwords cost companies an average of $4.5 million and took an average of 243 days to identify and 84 days to contain. 


With 6,000 logins to track, Trevor Ewen, chief operating officer at QBench, a software provider for labs, did what most people would do when faced with an unmanageable number of passwords. He had a small rotation that he could remember: one for high-security purposes, one for medium security and one for low security. 


Working in software engineering, “you end up with an absurd number of logins,” he says. Some are for things like free trials to test products or services which are used once or for a short period and then never again. But others are for business-critical functions such as cloud platforms or company bank accounts, which must be protected. “It’s an existential threat,” he says about the number of passwords to juggle.


How a password manager works


Ewen decided to look for a password manager—a tool that can generate unique, long and complex passwords for you, while also securely storing them using encryption and other high-security methods. 


He settled on 1Password, but there are many others available, including LastPass and NordPass. Once logged in to a password manager, users can automatically log in to various websites and apps. Because password managers operate in the cloud, they automatically work with different devices. 


There are password managers for both personal and business use. The main difference is that a business password manager is set up to accommodate more users and may have additional business-focused features. 


All 25 employees at QBench now have access to a password manager, which controls and limits access based on department, Ewen says. Logins are organized into files to make it easy to manage permissions and limit access. The finance team can access shared logins for billing and payment management, while technical staff can gain access to the cloud or other relevant tools. 


If one team member has to change a password, it’ll be stored automatically so others can still access the login. Also, senior leadership can cut off access if someone leaves the company. 


Of course, to log in to password managers, you’ll also need to create a password, so make sure it’s a secure one that follows best practices by making it long, with a mix of uppercase and lowercase characters, numbers and symbols. And while password managers have been hacked in the past, that doesn’t mean your stored passwords are accessible. To access those, hackers still need your password manager login or master password.


Just one cybersecurity tool   


Given the dozens of passwords people and businesses need to track these days, a password manager can be a good solution—ensuring better security and easier logins. But keep in mind that a password manager is just one tool among many that will keep your business secure.


You should also have antivirus and antimalware software that can detect malicious emails and protect your devices and network from intruders. Spectrum Business Internet customers receive up to 25 free licenses of the F-Secure internet security suite that, along with a password tool, can help bolster your security.


Want to learn more about the many additional services and features Spectrum Business Internet high-speed internet plans can provide your business? Contact us at 855-299-9353.

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