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Keep track of your passwords efficiently and securely

One important rule in choosing and using passwords is to not use the same password for every account. Doing so exposes ALL of your secure resources if that one password is compromised. You may need to use a program to store and track all of your passwords.

There are many programs available to help you keep track of your passwords. One that is free (and open source) is KeePass. One advantage of KeePas is that you can get versions for Windows, Macintosh OS X, and Linux, and all versions can read the same encrypted data files. KeePass also has the advantage of being able to run on a USB Flash drive. That means you can take KeePass (and all of your passwords) with you when you work on different computers.

 

With KeePass, you organize your passwords into Groups (like Windows, Network, Web Sites, etc., as above). You can add/rename/delete groups. You then store passwords within the appropriate group. For example, to store login information to a web site, you would click on Web sites, then click the Add Entry button.

 

A window like the one below appears and you would enter the login information.

 

Notice the color bar below password. This indicates how strong your password is. If you would like KeePass to generate a password for you, click the Gen button.

The passwords are stored by KeePass in a secure database. KeePass is also secured by a password you set, so if someone gains access to the program they would still need your password to be able to open the program. Choose a strong password!

With more and more web sites, software, and other electronic resources requiring passwords, a password management program such as KeePass has become a necessity. You can view more information about KeePass here: http://keepass.sourceforge.net/