YOU MAY KNOW by now that you need a secure password manager. The best password is one even you don’t remember, but if you’re not used to using a password manager, it can seem daunting to set one up (and change all your passwords if you’ve been using weak ones). To sweeten the deal, there are a number of extra features that most popular password managers come with that can make the effort even more worthwhile.
Almost more important than having a good password is enabling two-factor authentication wherever it’s available. Two-factor authentication uses codes generated by or sent to your phone in order to confirm that you’re not only who you say you are, but that you have something you said you would have (namely, your phone). This provides an extra layer of security, preventing someone who only has your username and password from gaining access to your account.
Unfortunately, not every website enables this feature. While some major sites encourage you to turn it on, many sites only offer it as an optional security feature buried in your account’s settings. Many password managers will highlight accounts you have with services that offer two-factor authentication so you can enable it if you haven’t already. This is a very handy feature and it’s worth checking your list from time to time to make sure that you have two-factor enabled in as many places as possible.
Passwords aren’t the only sensitive information that you might want to save. For example, you shouldn’t store your credit card information in every online store you shop with, but you can save that information in a password manager. Entering a credit card number into your vault includes space for the card number itself, expiration dates, and security codes. The best password managers even notify you or flag your card information if it’s about to expire, and auto-fill it when you shop at a new site.