Never Let Your Web Browser Save Your Passwords – Do This Instead

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When it comes to safeguarding our passwords, credit card numbers, and personal details, relying solely on the built-in password manager of your desktop web browser may not be the best choice. Web browsers, despite their efforts, often struggle to provide adequate protection for this sensitive information. They can be easily compromised by malware, browser extensions, and even legitimate software, putting your data at risk. In this guide, we will explore the limitations of web browser password managers and offer alternative solutions to enhance your security. By using stand-alone password managers or even opting for the traditional method of writing passwords down, you can better protect your valuable information, especially for sensitive accounts related to finances, shopping, webmail, or social media. Let’s delve into the reasons behind this and discover how to implement safer practices.

The Risks Of Saving Passwords In Web Browsers

Vulnerability to Hackers

Saving passwords in web browsers can make them easily accessible to hackers if they gain unauthorized access to your computer or smartphone. Once inside, hackers can exploit the stored passwords to gain entry to your various online accounts. This can lead to the theft of personal information, such as your email, social media, or banking details, exposing you to potential identity theft or financial loss.

Shared Devices

If you share your computer or smartphone with others, saving passwords in web browsers becomes even riskier. Anyone with access to the device can potentially view and use your saved passwords without your knowledge or consent. This can compromise the security of your accounts and put your personal information at risk.

Lack Of Encryption

Many web browsers do not encrypt saved passwords, which means they are stored in plain text. This lack of encryption makes them vulnerable to interception by malicious actors. If a hacker manages to gain access to your device or intercept your network traffic, they can easily retrieve your passwords and gain unauthorized access to your accounts.

Syncing Across Devices

Some web browsers offer the convenience of syncing saved passwords across multiple devices. While this may seem beneficial, it also increases the risk. If one device is compromised, all the saved passwords synced across devices become vulnerable. This means that a single security breach can potentially expose all your passwords, putting your entire digital identity at risk.

How To Deal With Passwords Saved In Your Web Browser

1. Use a Stand-Alone Password Manager as a Secure Alternative

To address the security risks associated with saving passwords in web browsers, it is recommended to use a password manager like LastPass or 1Password. These tools use strong encryption to protect your passwords and often offer additional features like password generation, auto-fill, and synchronization across multiple devices. However, Password managers are dedicated tools designed to securely store and manage your passwords. Here’s why they are a safer alternative:

– Encryption and Additional Security Features:

Password managers encrypt your passwords, making them unreadable to hackers. Additionally, they often offer additional security features such as two-factor authentication, which adds an extra layer of protection to your accounts.

– Generation of Strong, Unique Passwords:

Password managers can generate strong, unique passwords for each of your online accounts. This eliminates the risk of using weak or easily guessable passwords, significantly enhancing your account security.

– Centralized Password Management and Regular Updates:

With a password manager, all your passwords are stored in one secure location. This makes it easier to manage and update them regularly, reducing the risk of using outdated or compromised passwords.

– Protection Against Phishing Attempts:

Password managers often have features that can detect phishing attempts. They can warn you if you are entering your credentials on a suspicious website, helping you avoid falling victim to phishing attacks.

2. Disable password saving in your web browser:

Most web browsers offer the option to save passwords for convenience, but this can pose a security risk if your browser is compromised. Disable the password saving feature in your browser’s settings to prevent sensitive passwords from being stored locally. This way, even if someone gains unauthorized access to your browser, they won’t have access to your passwords.

3. Avoid saving passwords for sensitive accounts:

It’s crucial to refrain from saving passwords for sensitive accounts such as banking, shopping, email, and social media. These accounts often contain valuable personal and financial information, making them prime targets for hackers.

4. Keep your web browser updated:

Regularly update your web browser to ensure you have the latest security patches and bug fixes. Browser updates often include important security enhancements that address known vulnerabilities.

5. Be cautious with browser extensions:

Browser extensions can enhance your browsing experience, but they can also introduce security risks. Only install extensions from trusted sources, such as official browser stores, and be cautious when granting permissions to extensions. Malicious extensions can potentially access and extract sensitive information from your browser.

How To Prevent Your Web Browser From Saving Your Passwords

Typically, you can access the Settings menu by clicking on the three dots or lines located in the top right corner of the browser window. However, in Opera, you can access the Settings menu by clicking on the Opera icon positioned in the top left corner. Safari, on the other hand, has its own unique method of accessing settings.

To stop or prevent your web browser from saving and autofilling your passwords, follow these steps for each respective browser:

Brave:

Here are the steps to stop your web browser from saving and autofilling passwords for Brave:

Quick Guide

   – Go to Settings > Advanced > Autofill.
   – Toggle off “Offer to save passwords.”
   – Toggle off “Auto Sign-in.”

Detailed Explained

1. Open Brave web browser and click on the three horizontal dots in the top-right corner of the window to access the menu.

2. From the menu, select “Settings.”

3. In the Settings menu, click on “Advanced” in the left sidebar.

4. Scroll down to the “Autofill” section.

5. Toggle off the switch next to “Offer to save passwords.” This will prevent Brave from saving any new passwords.

6. Additionally, toggle off the switch next to “Auto Sign-in.” This will disable the automatic sign-in feature for saved passwords.

Chrome:

To stop Chrome from saving and autofilling passwords, follow these steps:

Quick Guide

   – Go to Settings > Autofill.
   – Toggle off “Offer to save passwords.”
   – Toggle off “Auto Sign-in.”

Detail Explained

1. Open Chrome and click on the three vertical dots in the top-right corner of the window to open the menu.

2. From the menu, select “Settings.”

3. In the Settings page, scroll down and click on “Autofill” in the left sidebar.

4. Under the Autofill section, click on “Passwords.”

5. Toggle off the switch next to “Offer to save passwords.” This will prevent Chrome from saving any new passwords.

6. Additionally, toggle off the switch next to “Auto Sign-in.” This will disable the automatic sign-in feature for saved passwords.

Edge

To prevent Edge from saving and autofilling passwords, follow these steps:

Quick Guide

   – Go to Settings > Profiles > Passwords.
   – Toggle off “Offer to save passwords.”
   – Choose whether to automatically fill passwords or prompt for the device password before autofilling.

Detail Explained

1. Open the Edge browser and click on the three horizontal dots in the top-right corner to open the menu.

2. From the menu, select “Settings.”

3. In the Settings page, click on “Profiles” in the left sidebar.

4. Under the Profiles section, click on “Passwords.”

5. Toggle off the switch next to “Offer to save passwords.” This will prevent Edge from saving any new passwords.

6. You can further customize the autofill behavior by selecting one of the options under “Sign-in and Passwords.” You can choose to automatically fill passwords or prompt for the device password before autofilling.

Firefox

To stop Firefox from saving and autofilling passwords, follow these steps:

Quick Guide

   – Go to Settings > Privacy & Security.
   – Scroll down to Logins and Passwords.
   – Uncheck “Ask to save logins and passwords for websites.”
   – Uncheck “Autofill logins and passwords.”

Detail Explained

1. Open Firefox and click on the three horizontal lines in the top-right corner to open the menu.

2. From the menu, select “Options.”

3. In the Options page, click on “Privacy & Security” in the left sidebar.

4. Scroll down to the “Logins and Passwords” section.

5. Uncheck the box next to “Ask to save logins and passwords for websites.” This will prevent Firefox from saving any new passwords.

6. Uncheck the box next to “Autofill logins and passwords.” This will disable the automatic filling of saved passwords.

Opera

To prevent Opera from saving and autofilling passwords, follow these steps:

Quick Guide

   – Go to Settings > Advanced Settings > Autofill > Passwords.
   – Toggle off “Offer to save passwords.”
   – Toggle off “Auto Sign-in.”

Details Explain

1. Open Opera and click on the Opera logo in the top-left corner to open the menu.

2. From the menu, select “Settings.”

3. In the Settings page, click on “Advanced” in the left sidebar.

4. Scroll down and click on “Autofill” to expand the options.

5. Under the Autofill section, click on “Passwords.”

6. Toggle off the switch next to “Offer to save passwords.” This will prevent Opera from saving any new passwords.

7. Additionally, toggle off the switch next to “Auto Sign-in.” This will disable the automatic sign-in feature for saved passwords.

Safari

To disable password saving and autofilling in Safari, follow these steps:

Quick Guide

   – Go to Safari (in the menu bar) > Preferences.
   – Select the Autofill tab.
   – Uncheck “User names and passwords” and “Credit cards.”
   – Alternatively, go to the Passwords tab and uncheck “AutoFill usernames and passwords,” but note that it won’t affect saved credit card numbers.

Detail Explained

1. Open Safari and click on “Safari” in the menu bar at the top of the screen.

2. From the drop-down menu, select “Preferences.”

3. In the Preferences window, click on the “Autofill” tab.

4. Uncheck the box next to “User names and passwords.” This will prevent Safari from saving passwords.

5. If you also want to disable autofilling of credit card information, uncheck the box next to “Credit cards.”

Alternatively, you can go to the “Passwords” tab in the Preferences window and uncheck the box next to “AutoFill usernames and passwords.” Please note that this will not affect saved credit card numbers.

How To Export Your Browser Passwords

Your browser has the capability to export a list of saved passwords in a comma-separated-values (CSV) format. This CSV file can be easily opened using programs like Excel or other spreadsheet software. Additionally, stand-alone password managers can also import CSV files for added convenience.

To export your browser passwords, follow these steps for each respective browser:

Brave

To export passwords in Brave, follow these steps:

1. Open Brave browser and click on the menu icon (three horizontal lines) in the top-right corner.

2. From the drop-down menu, select “Settings.”

3. In the Settings page, scroll down and click on “Advanced” to expand the advanced settings options.

4. Under the Autofill section, click on the three stacked dots next to “Saved Passwords.”

5. A pop-up menu will appear. Select “Export passwords.”

6. You may be prompted to enter your computer’s password or authenticate the export process.

7. Choose a location on your computer to save the exported passwords file and click “Save.”

Chrome

To export passwords in Chrome, follow these steps:

1. Open Chrome browser and click on the menu icon (three vertical dots) in the top-right corner.

2. From the drop-down menu, select “Settings.”

3. In the Settings page, scroll down and click on “Autofill” in the left sidebar.

4. Under the Autofill section, click on the three stacked dots next to “Saved Passwords.”

5. A pop-up menu will appear. Select “Export passwords.”

6. You may be prompted to enter your computer’s password or authenticate the export process.

7. Choose a location on your computer to save the exported passwords file and click “Save.”

Edge

To export passwords in Microsoft Edge, follow these steps:

1. Open Microsoft Edge browser and click on the menu icon (three horizontal dots) in the top-right corner.

2. From the drop-down menu, select “Settings.”

3. In the Settings page, click on “Profiles” in the left sidebar.

4. Under the Passwords section, click on the three horizontal dots next to “Saved passwords.”

5. A pop-up menu will appear. Select “Export passwords.”

6. You may be prompted to enter your computer’s password or authenticate the export process.

7. Choose a location on your computer to save the exported passwords file and click “Save.”

Firefox

To export passwords in Mozilla Firefox, follow these steps:

1. Open Firefox browser and click on the menu icon (three horizontal lines) in the top-right corner.

2. From the drop-down menu, select “Options.”

3. In the Options page, click on “Privacy & Security” in the left sidebar.

4. Scroll down to the “Logins and Passwords” section and click on “Saved Logins.”

5. A new tab titled “Firefox Lockwise” will open, displaying all your saved logins.

6. In the upper-right corner of the Firefox Lockwise tab, click on the three horizontal dots.

7. From the menu that appears, select “Export Logins.”

8. Choose a location on your computer to save the exported passwords file and click “Save.”

Opera

To export passwords in Opera, follow these steps:

1. Open Opera browser and click on the menu icon (three horizontal lines) in the top-left corner.

2. From the drop-down menu, select “Settings” and then click on “Advanced” in the left sidebar.

3. Under the Autofill section, click on “Passwords.”

4. You will be redirected to the “Passwords” page where all your saved passwords are listed.

5. Click on the three horizontal dots next to “Saved passwords.”

6. From the menu that appears, select “Export passwords.”

7. You may be prompted to enter your computer’s password or authenticate the export process.

8. Choose a location on your computer to save the exported passwords file and click “Save.”

Safari

To export passwords in Safari, follow these steps:

1. Open Safari browser on your Mac.

2. In the menu bar at the top of the screen, click on “File.”

3. From the drop-down menu, select “Export” and then choose “Passwords.”

4. A prompt will appear asking you to enter your Mac login password. Enter your password and click “OK.”

5. Choose a location on your computer to save the exported passwords file.

6. In the save dialog, give the file a name and select the file format as CSV.

7. Click “Save” to export your passwords as a CSV file.

How To Delete Your Browser’s Saved Passwords

Finally, you’ll want to delete the passwords saved in your web browser. To delete saved passwords in different web browsers, follow these steps:

Brave

To delete saved passwords in Brave, you can follow these steps:

1. Open the Brave browser on your computer.

2. Click on the menu icon, which is represented by three horizontal lines, located in the top-right corner of the browser window.

3. From the drop-down menu that appears, select “Settings.”

4. In the Settings page, you will see a sidebar on the left side of the screen. Click on “Advanced” to expand the advanced settings options.

5. Under the “Advanced” section, you will find the “Autofill” category. Click on “Passwords.”

6. This will open the passwords settings page, where you will see a list of all the saved passwords in Brave.

7. To delete an individual password, locate the password entry in the list and click on the three stacked dots next to it.

8. From the options that appear, select “Remove” to delete the selected password.

Chrome

To delete saved passwords in Google Chrome, you can follow these steps:

1. Open the Google Chrome browser on your computer.

2. Click on the menu icon, which is represented by three vertical dots, located in the top-right corner of the browser window.

3. From the drop-down menu that appears, select “Settings.”

4. In the Settings page, scroll down until you find the “Autofill” section in the left sidebar.

5. Under the “Autofill” section, click on “Passwords.”

6. This will open the password manager in Chrome, where you will see a list of all the saved passwords.

7. To delete an individual password, locate the password entry in the list and click on the three stacked dots next to it.

8. From the options that appear, select “Remove” to delete the selected password.

Edge

To delete saved passwords in Microsoft Edge, you can follow these steps:

1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser on your computer.

2. Click on the menu icon, which is represented by three horizontal dots, located in the top-right corner of the browser window.

3. From the drop-down menu that appears, select “Settings.”

4. In the Settings page, you will see a sidebar on the left side of the screen. Click on “Profiles” to expand the profile settings options.

5. Under the “Passwords” section, click on “Saved passwords.”

6. This will open the password manager in Edge, where you will see a list of all the saved passwords.

7. To delete an individual password, locate the password entry in the list and click on the three stacked dots next to it.

8. From the options that appear, select “Remove” to delete the selected password.

Firefox

To delete saved passwords in Mozilla Firefox, you can follow these steps:

1. Open the Mozilla Firefox browser on your computer.

2. Click on the menu icon, which is represented by three horizontal lines, located in the top-right corner of the browser window.

3. From the drop-down menu that appears, select “Options.”

4. In the Options page, you will see a sidebar on the left side of the screen. Click on “Privacy & Security.”

5. Scroll down to the “Logins and Passwords” section and click on “Saved Logins.”

6. This will open a new tab called “Firefox Lockwise” that displays all your saved passwords.

7. To delete all passwords, click on the three horizontal dots in the upper-right corner of the Firefox Lockwise tab.

8. From the options that appear, select “Remove All Logins.”

9. If you want to delete individual passwords, locate the password entry in the list and click on the three horizontal dots next to it.

10. From the options that appear, select “Remove” to delete the selected password.

Opera

To delete saved passwords in Opera, you can follow these steps:

1. Open the Opera browser on your computer.

2. Click on the menu icon, which is represented by three horizontal lines, located in the top-left corner of the browser window.

3. From the drop-down menu that appears, select “Settings.”

4. In the Settings page, you will see different categories on the left side of the screen. Click on “Advanced” to expand the advanced settings options.

5. Under the “Autofill” section, click on “Passwords.”

6. This will open the password manager in Opera, where you will see a list of all the saved passwords.

7. To delete an individual password, locate the password entry in the list and click on the three stacked dots next to it.

8. From the options that appear, select “Remove” to delete the selected password.

Safari

To delete saved passwords in Safari, you can follow these steps:

1. Open the Safari browser on your computer.

2. Click on “Safari” in the menu bar at the top of the screen.

3. From the drop-down menu that appears, select “Preferences.”

4. In the Preferences window, click on the “Passwords” tab.

5. You may be prompted to enter your macOS password or use Touch ID to access the saved passwords.

6. In the passwords list, select each password entry individually by clicking on it. You can also use Shift-click to select multiple entries.

7. Once you have selected the passwords you want to delete, click on the “Remove” button at the bottom-left of the window.

Which Passwords To Delete

When it comes to passwords, it’s essential to be selective about the accounts you allow your browser to remember. For websites that require minimal personal information, such as those that only ask for your name and email address, it may be acceptable to let your browser remember the password. However, for accounts tied to credit card numbers, online stores, bank accounts, social media platforms, or webmail accounts, it’s crucial to remove those passwords from your web browser immediately.

Categories: Passwords

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