Share passwords safely with your virtual assistant.
You’ve heard the horror stories.
You hire a virtual office assistant to work on your website.
The relationship starts out great but then…
You’re locked out of your own site.
Don’t let this happen to you.
Share Passwords Safely, But How?
Safe and Secure Password Basics
Before you learn how to share passwords safely with your assistant, let’s review the basics.
- Don’t Write Your Password Down (or keep it on your phone or keep it in a Word document)
- Use a password manager (LastPass)
- Use 2-factor authentication
- Don’t use easy to guess passwords (your name, all one number, “password”, birthday, anniversary, pet’s name, etc.)
- Don’t use the same password on every site
What makes a strong password?
In a post on Wired, Brian Barret, author of Perfect Passwords, interviewed 7 experts. He suggests the length of the password is more important than complexity.
A longer password is usually better than a more random password… as long as the password is at least 12-15 characters long – source
So, go ahead and modify those long gibberish passwords. 😉
Who Would Share Passwords?
- Web Designers
- Virtual Assistants
- Team Members
- Shopping Cart Specialists
- Family and Friends
What are the benefits of using a password management system?
Password managers use encryption which makes it safer than simply sharing via email. It’s not foolproof by any means, but it’s better than email.
Password managers let you use one password to access all your accounts.
Instead of remembering all 50+ accounts, a management system lets you set a universal password.
It makes it easier to remember, don’t you think?
Most allow you to store other information like your name, address, phone number, and even security questions.
It’s also very easy to use no matter what device you’re using whether that be your phone, your tablet, laptop, or desktop.
When is the best time to use a password manager?
You’re not keeping a handwritten notebook of your passwords, are you?
How to Use LastPass to Share Passwords Safely
Both you and your assistant must have LastPass accounts
Go to your LastPass vault, search for the account you want (Pinterest, Tailwind, Email, etc.)
Hover over the “Share” icon, enter the email of your virtual office assistant and click “share”.
LastPass syncs the password to both your account and your assistant’s account.
This means that if you or your assistant changes the password, both accounts will be updated.
Is this foolproof? NO!
Learn more tips for securely sharing passwords with your family, friends, teammates, or outsourcing staff.
Important: Once the project is complete, change your password and revoke access.
Tips for Securely Sharing Passwords
Jill Duffy shares a few scenarios for which password sharing is necessary. (source 2014 PCMag)
- Family members (Netflix, iTunes, Bill payment)
- Coworkers (virtual teams)
- Emergency access in case of death, injury, natural disaster etc.
Tony Bradley interviewed Michelle Dennedy of Intel Security about the best ways to secure password. She shares you… (source 2015 PcWorld)
- Share with caution (even with a spouse)
- Lock your phone
- Delete everything sensitive (um, those selfies you sent your spouse)
Concerns About the Safety of Sharing Passwords
Although LastPass and other managers use encryption, someone can work around it to get your password.
What if my virtual assistant saves my password?
John suggests that LastPass auto-generate a new password.
A nice feature when removing a shared password or folder would be to generate a new password. Why – just in case the person you shared it with saved the password when they had it.
Jonathan R. reveals one backdoor that tech savvy (or not so savvy) assistants may use:
One thing to keep in mind is that the “Allow Recipient to View Password” is basically useless. It’s extremely trivial to view any password shared with you, thanks to browser developer tools (right-click on password input and choose “Inspect Element”, then change the input type from “password” to “text”, voila). So definitely only share passwords with people you trust.
What do you think dear reader? Do you trust password managers? Have you had a bad experience? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Do you know someone who would enjoy learning about sharing passwords with remote workers? Please use the social share buttons below.
This post is part of the Ultimate Blog Challenge Day 5.
- Benefits of Using a Password Manager – Emhiso via RIT Information Security
- Learn more about LastPass with Lynda.
- Learn about the latest update of LastPass coming soon.