Password management systems are some of today’s best cybersecurity tools. From small businesses and startups to the largest corporations, passwords are a necessary and simultaneously powerful and fragile cybersecurity resource. A great password can potentially fend off a hacker, whereas a poor password has the exact opposite effect.
But what makes password management so important for cybersecurity? Is it really a matter of using the best enterprise password manager, or will any password manager do? Let’s step into the world of enterprise cybersecurity and take a closer look at one of the most overlooked and crucial tools in the fight against cyber threats.
What Does A Password Manager Do?
Password managers serve many functions, from storing and managing passwords, to generating passwords and beyond. Here are some common password manager features:
- MFA and 2FA capabilities
- Third-party cybersecurity software integration
- Secure storage and password management
- Offline backups
- Sensitive document storage
- High-level encryption
- Password generator
- Autofill feature
- Password reminder for duplicated or outdated passwords
These are some of the standard features you can expect from an enterprise password manager, but the scope of the service’s features will depend on the company. Some companies, like Keeper, even go as far as to provide dark web monitoring for your business or personal information.
MFA and 2FA Features
MFA, or multi-factor authentication, is a cybersecurity tool that requires a user to submit extra credentials to verify their identity for a login. 2FA is similar, but it only includes two methods of verification instead of multiple methods. Using 2FA or MFA for your business can massively increase your overall cybersecurity.
MFA and 2FA can let you know when an unauthorized person is accessing the account. The person trying to gain access will be required to submit either a one-time code or some other method of verification, which is usually sent via an authenticator app, text message, or private email. Unless the hacker has access to any of these things as well, they won’t be able to access the account—even if they have the full password.
Password managers can enable MFA or 2FA for every login, so you can protect your business and personal information with the click of a button.
Creating Better Passwords
The bane of cybersecurity is a bad password. And, unfortunately, the average person isn’t exactly great at creating strong passwords. Most of us use passwords we’ll remember, so they include things like addresses, birthdays, anniversary dates, and telephone numbers. Why is this a problem? Because most of those things are publicly accessible through public records, and a good hacker can use that information to figure out your password.
Let’s not forget that far too many people reuse passwords across multiple accounts. This is incredibly dangerous, especially because entire businesses can be put at risk from this practice. Reusing passwords all but guarantees that you’ll eventually be hacked.
Password managers help circumvent this issue by creating strong passwords with the click of a button. They’ll also store all the company passwords in an encrypted vault, which means you can monitor company passwords against duplicates. Some password managers also notify you when a duplicate is being used.
Storing Passwords Securely
Having a secure place to store passwords is critical. Where some companies are still storing passwords in Google Docs, you want to be ahead of the competition and protect your organization with a strong enterprise password manager. A Google Doc can be easily downloaded, shared, or hacked if someone gets ahold of Google credentials. Sticky notes are also bad ideas, because anyone visiting the office can see them stuck to your monitor.
Using a password manager is the best way to ensure that your passwords are stored securely and only accessible to those with the credentials to access them.
Preventing Unauthorized Access
On the subject of accessibility, password managers truly shine. The level of customization simply can’t be matched. You get full control over who has access to the company password vault, and you can create admin folders for specific passwords that only you can see (or anyone else with administrative level clearance).
Unauthorized access can potentially expose your entire system, so limiting who has access to what is a crucial step in your cybersecurity journey. Password managers offer a flexible, scalable platform to make that a reality.
Flexibility and Scalability
The great thing about online password managers is that you can use them with any browser and they’re accessible from anywhere. This level of flexibility means you can use your password manager across multiple devices, even if they have different operating systems and browsers. Not to mention, your password manager is designed to scale with your business, and many password management services offer high-level solutions for the enterprise. The bottom line? If you’re not using a password manager, you’re doing your business a disservice!