Having secure passwords are a requirement to protect yourself against identity theft, financial crimes, and simple privacy issues.
Keeping that information secret is another step toward that end.
A good password manager will help with both of those points and nothing comes close to what LastPass can do for you!
Look, this isn’t the 1990s where you only had a few websites to remember passwords for, and thieves weren’t as smart.
These days, everything we do requires a password such as:
- Online banking (ie: bank account management, bill payment, transfers, etc)
- Online shopping
- Paying bills (ie: utility bills & credit card statements)
- Work tasks
- Insurance & mortgage payment or account maintenance
- Managing memberships (gyms, frequent flyer programs, retail rewards)
- Using apps (streaming, banking, social media)
And that’s the short-list!
There can be close to a hundred items if we brainstormed everything that requires a password.
It’s all too much to remember for most people who use a different password on each site (which is what is recommended).
That’s exactly why a password manager like LastPass is so valuable.
Trust me, I use it for business and personal stuff, and has definitely saved my sanity on multiple occasions ????
So, let’s start at the beginning…
What Is Lastpass?
As I stated earlier, LastPass is a password manager.
The easiest way to put it is that a password manager is like a school locker.
The password manager is the locker.
The passwords (or other documents you put in there) are your clothes, books, supplies, etc.
Your master password to log into Lastpass is like the Masterlock where only you have that info.
In fact, even LastPass itself doesn’t have access to your master password–that info never gets to the company itself.
All of the information stays on your own devices, which makes it even more secure.
The LastPass Secure Password Generator
LastPass is much more than a password manager.
It’s also a secure password generator as well!
The more secure sites out there require complex passwords containing a combination of uppercase/lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.
If it’s difficult to remember all of your different passwords, imagine how hard it is to come up with new ones!?
That’s what makes LastPass with its built-in password generator so great.
Each time you need a new one, you can use the password generator to create a strong password and then store it directly in the password manager.
You control the parameters:
- Password length
- If it contains numbers
- If it contains special characters
- If it contains a lowercase letter
- If it contains symbols
It’s literally all in your control!
The Lastpass Browser Extension
Sure, LastPass has a desktop application for Windows, Mac, and Linux.
Practically all programs are compatible across platforms.
That’s not really impressive.
What really makes this app stand out is the fact that it works on practically any web browser.
The LastPass browser extension works on the following browsers:
- Google Chrome
- Mozilla Firefox
- Apple Safari
- Microsoft Internet Explorer
- Microsoft Edge
- Opera Software Opera
What does that mean?
You don’t have to worry about choosing LastPass for your password manager because it will follow you everywhere.
No matter what operating system or web browser you use, you will be able to continue to use Lastpass without worry.
On top of that, using the LastPass extension makes your life easier because it also auto-fills your username/password combos.
It may not seem like a lot, but if you think about how much time it takes you to remember or look up your credentials and then type them, it adds up over time.
Android/iPhone Password manager
While LastPass has many desktop options it is just as versatile on mobile devices, too!
Do you need an Android password manager?
LastPass has you covered.
Do you need an iPhone password manager?
LastPass has you covered there, too.
It also works as an iPad password manager.
Know what the best part is?
LastPass plugs your usernames & passwords into mobile apps.
That’s not all…LastPass also works on mobile browsers!
You pretty much can use this app/program on any device.
The LastPass Authenticator
While we’re on the subject of mobile devices, let’s talk about two-factor authentication (2FA)?
You know, that extra layer of security where you get a text message or an email with a time-sensitive code to verify that isn’t actually you signing in?
Another option is to use an authenticator app.
This app cycles through a new six-digit code every sixty seconds.
When you are asked to verify your identity via 2FA, you open the app and type in the current code to gain access–you can usually set that website to “trust” the browser you are signing in from for 30 days so you don’t have to keep verifying each time.
Well, guess what?
LastPass has one of those apps, too ????
What makes it even better is the fact that for some sites, you don’t even have to look up and then type in the code.
The LastPass Authenticator app will open up with an “X” in a red box or a checkmark in a green box, so all you need to do is to tap the green box to verify your access.
It makes life so much easier, and the authenticator is free to use regardless of your use of LastPass as a password manager.
This is one specific feature I want to single out as being important to mention.
There are times when you just need to give someone access to a website.
But what happens if you don’t want to give that person the actual password?
What if you only want them to have that access for a specific time frame?
How do you handle that?
LastPass makes that easy.
All you have to do is make sure that person has their own LastPass account, and you can share your credentials with them.
They get an email to accept the shared info, but here’s the great part:
They can use their own LastPass to autofill and log into that site but they can’t see the actual password.
Then, if you want to end their ability to access that site, you simply go to your sharing center and cancel their access.
You don’t have to worry about them using that password to try to access other sites.
You don’t have to worry about creating a new password to cut off their access.
This is the exact method I use for my accounting and tax clients to share their bank access with me without compromising the security of those accounts.
This is one of the biggest selling points of using LastPass as your password manager.
So many people like getting free stuff, so if you fall into that category you’re in luck!
You get to use the basic features for free:
- password manager
- password generator
- browser extension(s)
- mobile password manager
That should eliminate one of the biggest gripes about using a program/app to increase security–price.
Just remember, like with anything you get what you pay for so that means basic support options and limited security/no storage.
For people who want more features such as advanced security & support plus more full-powered features, you will have to upgrade to a paid plan.
Here is a basic comparison of the different plans via LastPass directly:
As you can see, LastPass is like most services with a free option: you get a taste for free but need to pay for a more robust version.
Unlike most other programs, however, LastPass doesn’t cost you a ton of money to upgrade!
One Bad Experience With LastPass
I won’t say that LastPass is flawless or without room for improvement.
I do have a recurring issue with the Chrome browser extension.
For whatever reason, every few weeks the browser extension stops working.
It needs to be removed and then reinstalled, and then it works fine again.
This isn’t a huge deal or anything that would make me say the service isn’t worth using…it’s just a PITA and usually happens out of the blue.
Honestly, though, if that is the only problem I have with LastPass I’m more than happy to heal with such a minor thing!
First, let me reiterate one thing:
I’ve been on the LastPass Premium plan for years.
So everything I say is from personal experience and not talking points stolen from someone else or even the LastPass website ????
Honestly, I can’t think of any reason not to use this for your own password manager.
There are three key reasons why:
- The security is top-notch
- There’s no reason to ever use a basic password or reuse passwords again
- It’s such a low cost or none at all
The only downside I have ever experienced is the issue with the browser extension I mentioned earlier.
Overall, I think this is something everyone needs to be using.
Do you still use basic, easy-to-steal passwords? Do you still keep track of all your passwords in a notebook or something similar? What would be your reason for not using a password manager?