To understand why you might need a hardware password management device first you must ask yourself the initial questions.
What is a Personal Password Manager?
Password managers are software applications which store all your passwords for various websites and local programs on your PC. Personal password managers are of various types, from web-browser based applications, online cloud-based solutions and anti-virus suites to dedicated USB disk based programs. All of these password management tools have their own merits and demerits. Security is of course paramount importance because if you are going to store all of your passwords in another location and that location is insecure your passwords could all be at risk.
Why do you need a Password Management Tool?
Today, there are hundreds of websites which we visit every month, at least a hundred of them requiring password protected accounts. Email websites, Social networking sites, blogs, online banking sites, job-related websites and lots more need you to create strong passwords to keep away miscreants who attempt to break into your accounts.
Some people create similar passwords for each or most sites, and end up losing access to their accounts or worse. Some create extremely strong passwords, and end up forgetting them. Both of these are unacceptable, and the only solution is to have a password management tool which allows you to store, retrieve and modify passwords for several websites and programs while keeping the passwords secure.
I have been storing all my online passwords on a web browser based password manager tool like Firefox and Google Chrome since the time I started using the internet. I bet most of you have too. Google Chrome now even has a cloud-based password and settings storage facility, in addition to tens of other online password managers. The main problem with cloud-based password management tools is that if hacked into, they will make all your sensitive information available to the miscreants. To avoid such mishaps, I have been heavily considering the ii2P’s MyLOK.
MyLOK is a USB memory disk based personal password manager, using which you can store, retrieve and modify passwords for websites as well as desktop software applications, and backup and sync passwords on multiple PCs and tablets! Created by ii2P, MyLOK is a local, more secure though less convenient alternative to cloud-based password managers. It is more secure than password managing applications on your computer, since you may choose to block access to the USB disk just by physically removing it, thus preventing hacking attempts.
The disk itself is tamper-resistant and will self-destruct when physically tampered with, meaning that if a certain amount of wrong attempts are made the data will be wiped clean so you can be assured that even if you lose the device or it is stolen you don’t have to worry about your data being stolen from a brute force attack. Another great feature of the MyLOK password management tool is that you can use it to generate strong random passwords for various applications and with storage space for over 250 passwords this should be good enough for most individuals. The encrypted EEPROM disk can be used with any PC, and has 36 KB memory.
This personal password manager from ii2P has one the highest security encryption algorithms available. The password generator seems to be a bit complex in our initial review, and could pose a learning curve for inexperienced users. Another area which could be improved is that the master password is just a 4-digit PIN, which needs to be chosen carefully keeping in mind the fact that all passwords can be accessed using it and losing/forgetting the PIN or security answers would make the passwords inaccessible! I think a 4 digit pin can still be a little to simplistic and they should allow for a 6 or 8 digit PIN, since most people may be prone to using their ATM pin for their security PIN as is a common practice for people to re-use the same PIN/passwords among multiple services and this should be deterred.
For regular computer users who need password security for local as well as web-based applications, MyLOK is a good investment priced reasonably at only $89.95.