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Take Control of Your Passwords, 3rd Edition

Book Description

Overcome password frustration with Joe Kissell's expert advice!

Passwords have become a truly maddening aspect of modern life, but with this book, you can discover how the experts handle all manner of password situations, including multi-factor authentication that can protect you even if your password is hacked or stolen.

The book explains what makes a password secure and helps you create a strategy that includes using a password manager, working with oddball security questions like "What is your pet's favorite movie?", and making sure your passwords are always available when needed.

Joe helps you choose a password manager (or switch to a better one) in a chapter that discusses desirable features and describes a dozen different apps, with a focus on those that work in macOS, iOS, Windows, and Android. The book also looks at how you can audit your passwords to keep them in tip-top shape, use two-step verification and two-factor authentication, and deal with situations where a password manager can't help.

The book closes with an appendix on helping a relative set up a reasonable password strategy for those whose relatives have distressing password strategies, and an extended explanation of password entropy for those who want to consider the math behind passwords.

"Awesome. You did an amazing job breaking it down. This should be mandatory reading." -Rich Mogull, CEO at Securosis

This book shows you exactly why:

  • 9-character passwords with upper- and lowercase letters, digits, and punctuation are not strong enough.

  • You cannot turn a so-so password into a great one by tacking a punctuation character and number on the end.

  • It is not safe to use the same password everywhere, even if it's a great password.

  • A password is not immune to automated cracking because there's a delay between login attempts.

  • Even if you're an ordinary person without valuable data, your account may still be hacked, causing you problems.

  • You cannot manually devise "random" passwords that will defeat potential attackers.

  • Just because a password doesn't appear in a dictionary, that does not necessarily mean that it's adequate.

  • It is not a smart idea to change your passwords every month.

  • Truthfully answering security questions like "What is your mother's maiden name?" does not keep your data more secure.

  • Adding a character to a 10-character password does not make it 10 percent stronger.

  • Easy-to-remember passwords like "correct horse battery staple" will not solve all your password problems.

  • All password managers are not pretty much the same.

  • Your passwords will not be safest if you never write them down and keep them only in your head.

But don't worry, the book also teaches you a straightforward strategy for handling your passwords that will keep your data safe without driving you batty.

"Joe handles a confusing and scary subject more clearly and calmly than I would have thought possible. I'll be recommending this book to just about everybody I know." -William Porter, database developer, author, photographer

Table of Contents

  1. Read Me First
    1. Updates and More
    2. Basics
    3. What’s New in the Third Edition
  2. Introduction
  3. 1Password Quick Start
  4. Meet 1Password
    1. License 1Password
    2. Learn About 1Password Accounts
    3. Configure 1Password
    4. Explore the 1Password Components
    5. Learn How Logins Work
    6. Find Your Usage Pattern
    7. Set Up Syncing
    8. Check for Updates
    9. Learn What 1Password Isn’t Good For
  5. Understand Password Security
    1. Learn Password Security Basics
    2. Understand Optimal Password Length
    3. Password Dos and Don’ts
  6. Use 1Password for Web Browsing
    1. Create and Save Logins
    2. Log In
    3. Deal with Multistep Logins
    4. Fill Web Forms Using Identities
    5. Shop Online Securely
  7. Store Other Information in 1Password
    1. Standalone Passwords
    2. One-Time Passwords
    3. Software Licenses
    4. Secure Notes
    5. Other Data Types
  8. Search and Organize Your 1Password Items
    1. Make Your Life Simpler
    2. Understand the Sidebar Sections
    3. Use Favorites
    4. Use Folders and Tags
    5. Switch Layouts
    6. Adjust the Sort Order
    7. Perform a Basic Search
    8. Perform an Advanced Search
    9. Use Smart Folders
    10. Work with Previously Generated Passwords
    11. Use the Trash
    12. Work with Multiple Vaults
  9. Edit 1Password Items
    1. Edit Saved Items
    2. Work with Icons and Thumbnails
    3. Update Old Passwords
    4. Perform a Password Security Audit
    5. Share 1Password Data
    6. Import and Export Data
    7. Print 1Password Data
  10. Customize 1Password
    1. Set Security Preferences
    2. Configure Other Mac Preferences
    3. Use 1Password with Other Utilities
  11. Manage a Family or Team Account
    1. Create a Family or Team Vault
    2. Invite Users to Your Family or Team
    3. Specify Permissions
    4. Suspend or Revoke Vault Access
  12. Use 1Password on the Go
    1. iOS
    2. Android
  13. Solve Problems
    1. Don’t Panic
    2. Troubleshoot Common Mac Problems
  14. About This Book
    1. Ebook Extras
    2. About the Author and Publisher
    3. Credits
  15. Also by Joe Kissell
  16. Copyright and Fine Print