While I generally fear forgetting passwords more than security, I have been increasingly creating more accounts, which is how LastPass became my new best friend. For a long time, I had a few social media accounts with very little useful information on them. My Facebook and Twitter accounts were totally unrelated to anything that included real private information. My bank accounts were unlinked to either of these or to anything else. A holdover from the late 1990s, I still didn’t use PayPal regularly.
Why I Felt I Needed to Do Something
I realized that I was way out of my league because of my Marvel Unlimited account. It was an application that I used for work (GeekMom and my teaching job), but one that I didn’t use regularly. Every time I tried to login, I’d forget what the password was. I’d end up getting locked out of the account or having to reset the password. This wasted so much time that I got frustrated, especially when it happened during class.
This was around the time I also needed to start using PayPal more. Working for myself meant getting paid through PayPal and starting a business account to record my payments. This meant I needed to make sure I had a “safe” password locking down the accounts.
You want to know the real reason I initially chose LastPass? I’m cheap. You can get a free account that handles just the basics for a single user, and it works great. For the first three months, I was perfectly content using it on one device (tablet) and just saving things there. But as I began to expand my business, I realized that I had cross-platform password recall needs. In other words, I’m so forgetful that I can’t remember anything, and I don’t want to keep bringing my tablet with me everywhere.
LastPass made it easy to access my password from all my different devices without having to move up to a paid account. With all my devices synced to LastPass, I could save new website logins and access them whenever and wherever I needed. As my clients increased, the different ways they paid me or tracked my time increased. This meant having more accounts with more online services, and more passwords to remember. LastPass to the rescue!
How LastPass Works
LastPass encrypts and securely backs up your passwords in the cloud and automatically syncs across all your devices. When you set up your LastPass account, you come up with your own “private” Master Password. This is the “last password” you will ever have to remember and the essentially the key to your password vault. Any information stored in your vault (for example: usernames, passwords, credit card information, etc) is encrypted using their local-only encryption model in which LastPass never knows the key (your master password) to decrypt that information. It uses a host of really fancy encryption protections.
Why LastPass Is Getting Better with LastPass Families
One of the things that I found I needed was the ability to safely share certain passwords with my husband who did not have a LastPass account. I love him and all, but we have different logins and passwords. As we are not some kind of fusion being, we have separate electronic footprints. That said, not only do I want access to some of his sensitive information, but I also need access to his passwords to help pay certain bills and things.
With LastPass Families, you can store everything from bank accounts to credit card numbers securely in LastPass, where they can be organized into folders, shared with family members, and given to others in the event of an emergency. With LastPass Families’ unlimited “sharing” feature, I can share as many online account logins as needed with my husband, and organize them into folders. For example, we have a “Utilities” folder that includes passwords for our electric and gas accounts.
All you have to do is invite your family members to your LastPass Families account and grant permissions. Family members receive LastPass accounts of their own where they can store personal passwords and specify those meant for sharing with others, while keeping the rest private. Currently, because I like to control things, I’m the family manager and have the ability to add and remove family members from the account and can grant those in my family access to specific folders that include various account logins. This also means that parents can regulate who can make changes to shared passwords.
As I mentioned before, LastPass allows you to store sensitive information in your vault—not just passwords. With the “secure notes” function, I can now share necessary information with my family members in the event of an emergency. For example, I can barely remember my own SSN. Remembering my kid’s and husband’s is out of the question. I’ve never had a way to carry that information that felt secure, until now. Since LastPass keeps the information safe, I can bring it with me anywhere I need that info, let’s say to doctor appointments, while not worrying that someone is going to steal it.
When looking for a password generator and aggregator, I looked for the easiest and cheapest solution. Why LastPass? Because it offered the best solution for my needs. As a sole proprietor of a service business, I don’t need anything complicated nor can I afford anything expensive. As a parent, I need to have one safe place where I can access the family’s information easily so that I don’t have to go looking for things. We’re a family on the go, so LastPass offers the best of all options.
LastPass Families is available now for up to six users, at just $4/month. To learn more and sign up for your Families account, please visit https://www.lastpass.com/families .