Password Storage and Security Tips
Simple passwords might be easy to remember, but that can also make them easier to crack. A strong password generally contains a combination of upper and lowercase letters along with symbols and numbers. Ideally, a user would memorize passwords, not share them with anyone, and update them regularly in order to keep them secure. Even then, security breaches are still possible due to internet hacking or unethical behavior by employees or others who have access to sensitive online data. Most individuals have numerous online accounts to manage, not to mention the user credentials and account information that fall under the purview of businesses. Here are some tips for safely storing and recovering passwords quickly when needed:
- The One Password You Must Remember: If you’re going to save passwords or other sensitive information in digital files, encrypting the files adds an extra layer of protection. Encryption basically scrambles the data and locks the file, which you can only open with a password. So, if you’re storing your login information in an encrypted, password-protected Excel file, for instance, you’ll need to remember that master password to open the file and access the information. You can encrypt Microsoft Excel and Word files by following a few steps under the File menu, and you can encrypt Adobe PDF files by following steps under the Tools menu. You can do a quick online search to find detailed instructions on encrypting files on Mac and Windows.
- Consider Storage Options: For extra security, you can store your password log on an encrypted hard drive. If you need to access a file from more than one location or device, you can use cloud storage services that are password protected, such as Dropbox or Google Drive. Those services support two-factor authentication, also referred to as two-step verification, which involves entering an initial password that you set, and then a second code that is sent to your mobile device.
- Think Twice Before Sharing: Occasionally, you’ll need to share a password with others, and multiple users may update that password. However, you risk having information get passed to others anytime someone has access to login details. Limit access to that information to the necessary parties, and never share sensitive password details via email, which is not secure.
- Schedule Updates: Get into the habit of updating passwords regularly, and keep track of when changes are made. Change passwords immediately if you suspect a leak.
Finding a balance between convenience and security can help you operate efficiently while reducing concerns about lost or stolen passwords.
Password Log Template
This password logbook template provides columns for storing passwords along with answers to security questions and other login details. List website URLs, usernames, and any additional information you want to track. You can download this log in Excel, Word, or PDF formats, so you can choose a spreadsheet option or an easily printable template.
Download Password Log Template
Password List Template
Create a basic password list for your login details to email and online sites. This Excel template provides a simple layout with room to list multiple entries. Add passwords and other important details for all of the websites you use. You can easily edit or expand the template to include additional information.
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Website Administrator Password List
Designed for developers and other website management roles, this password list template includes sections for adding login details for database access, hosting, and other admin account information. Small businesses or independent developers can use this list to manage passwords for a single website or multiple clients.
Download Website Administrator Password List
Basic Password List Template
Keep things simple with this password template for Word, which you can save to your computer or print and complete by hand. List usernames and passwords for various websites on an easy-to-read template. Create a password book for a family or multiple users by printing copies and adding them to a binder.
Download Basic Password List Template
Password Spreadsheet Template
A password spreadsheet template can help you organize and track login information for email, social media, banking, shopping sites, and more. Create a comprehensive Excel spreadsheet for all the details you don’t want to forget, including notes about each account. You can organize accounts by category, create an alphabetized list, or simply add new entries as they arise.
Password Manager Template
Use this password manager template to organize a large number of accounts by separating them into individual sheets. Alternatively, you can create separate sheets for multiple users. Keep track of account details, usernames and passwords, security questions, website URLs, and any other important information, such as when a password was last updated.
Printable Password Keeper Template
Often, a paper document is arguably safer than a digital file when it comes to storing passwords, as long as you keep it in a safe place. This printable version of a password keeper offers a simple solution for those who want a basic list of passwords with minimal information included.
Download Printable Password Keeper Template
Family Password Organizer
Designed for families, this password organizer template provides a range of layouts and color schemes in a single file. Parents can manage passwords for their kids while helping them learn about the importance of password security. Individuals can also use this template and customize it to suit their specific needs.
Download Family Password Organizer
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