You may know that it is possible tosave passwords from your internet browser to avoid having to enter them every time you want to connect to a website? It’s a handy feature that saves time and saves remembering all your passwords.
If this is useful for the user, it is however a flaw for your cybersecurity. Indeed, the password recovery, whether it is someone who has direct access to your computer (passwords can be displayed in clear) or a hacker who has successfully stolen your password, can be problematic. Especially if the stolen password allows access to sensitive online services such as your bank, taxes or if your bank card is registered there. To limit the risks (I say “limit” because, in absolute terms, you should not save your passwords in the browser), there is a feature in most browsers to protect your passwords.
Protecting passwords saved in Mozilla Firefox
Mozilla Firefox has been my favorite internet browser for years. It’s a browser that cares about the privacy of its users, free and open, developed by a non-profit organization. Firefox is available on all platforms (Windows, MacOs, Android and all Linux distributions). It has many extensions that allow it to extend its functionality. It also has a feature that allows you to protect passwords saved in Firefox. Here is the procedure to follow:
- Open Mozilla Firefox and right click on the “hamburger” menu
- From the menu list, select options.
- To select Privacy and security in the left menu of Firefox options then in the section Username and password, check the box Use a master password
- Set a strong password to protect passwords saved in Firefox then click on okay.
You have now set a master password for Firefox. Once Firefox has started, if you visit a website where you have registered your credentials, Firefox will display a window asking for your main password.
Once you have entered your password, you can access your saved passwords without having to enter them again. If your password is not correct, you will not be able to access your credentials saved in the browser.
Protect your passwords in Google Chrome and Brave
Google Chrome has become in a few years the most used web browser in the world, well helped by the dominant position of Google in the field of internet search. Google Chrome also offers the possibility of storing its identifiers in the browser to avoid having to enter them each time and that of securing its browser and saved passwords. Nothing special to do to protect passwords in Google Chrome, you will need to enter your Windows session password to be able to view saved passwords in the browser. This prevents a careless person who would have access to your open session from recovering passwords saved in Google Chrome.
Note that there is the same possibility in the Brave browser which also benefits from a security feature offered by Windows 10 which requests the password of the current Windows user.