Using Password Safe: Tip 10 for Thwarting Spear-Phishing Attacks

As I stated in my last blog, Password Safe was recommended at the ABA Techshow 2011 Conference – 60 Tips in 60 Minutes presentation by Dominic Jaar, National Leader for Information Management & E-Discovery at KPMG Canada.  I’ve been using Password Safe for a few weeks; it has performed great.

Password Safe is a simple-to-use and fully encrypted password database.  It allows you to create a “safe” to store all of your passwords.  The “combination” to the safe is a master password you set.  Here is my take on the best features of Password Safe:

  • Security: Full encryption.  Passwords are only decrypted in RAM and any clipboard memory is wiped/scrambled after use (NMRC did a product review and gave it their “Hacker Seal of Approval”).
  • Easy to get started and use: I had it set up and was using it literally within 2 minutes without reading a manual.  Very intuitive.
  • Generate passwords automatically: Unique, complex, 12-character passwords generated automatically – in the blink of an eye.
  • Password copy:  Double-click on the account and the password is copied so you can paste it into the password field of the system you’re logging into.

Here are my 5 tips for setting up, using and backing up Password Safe:

  1. Download and install: Use the Software-Today website; their short review and screen prints were helpful.
  2. Set – and remember – your master password: Make it 12-characters long and a mixture of Upper & loweR cAse letters, numb3rs, and specia! ch@ract&rs.  This is the only password you need to remember… DON’T FORGET IT!
  3. Start changing passwords on your sensitive accounts: Start with a bank account:
    1. Click on “Add New Entry” in Password Safe: fill in the info, click “Generate” for the password – screen should look like below; hit <OK>.
b. On the main screen of Password Safe, double-click on “Your Bank A” and click <OK> to copy your new password
c. Login to your bank account as usual (using your current – soon to be old – password), go to the Change Password screen and paste your new password into the appropriate field.
4. Whenever you normally login to one of your accounts, take 2 minutes to change your password as above: Don’t change all of your passwords at once; change them as you go about your normal business.  This gives you time to get used to Password Safe.

5. Backup your Password Safe database: I did this on two different thumb drives: one I keep in my office and the other I keep in my briefcase (remember, the database is fully encrypted and protected by your master password).  Click on “Options” and fill in the information on the “Backups” tab.


That’s it!  Within 30 days all of the passwords on your main accounts will be updated as a matter of course.

Good luck and hey… “let’s be careful out there”!

This is the 5th of 23 blogs I’m writing to celebrate the Atlanta Association of Legal Administrators’ 23rd annual Business Partner Expo.  This year the Business Partner Expo will be held from 3:00 – 6:30 pm on August 17th at the Cobb Galleria.  Over 150 legal administrators and their guests are expected to be on hand learning about the latest technologies, finding solutions to business issues, uncovering emerging trends and developing valuable partnerships to help their law firms.  Already an AALA member?  I’ll see you there!  Not an AALA member?  Give me a call at 404.943.0800 x133 to discuss how you might be able to go as a guest!

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Tony Rushin: In his role as VP of sales & marketing, he is responsible for hiring, managing and coaching the sales team and always staying on top of (and meeting) the needs of clients. Under his leadership, the company has steadily grown each year.

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