How to get started with a password manager

One of the most common security recommendations is to use a password manager. Read on to learn how to get started with a password manager.

Are your passwords saved on paper, in your head, or in various browsers on your devices? It is a daunting task to move to a password manager.

First, you have to learn to use the password manager. Next you have to gather all of your passwords from different devices and different software. Then you have to make sure you enter the passwords correctly. It is enough work that many of us give up before we have made the move.

We will be using the Avira password manager for this illustration. It is free, and as simple to use as any we have found. Here is a review of Avira from PC magazine.

Creating an account

Go to passwords.avira.com.

Opening screen at Avira.com

Click on “Get started for free”. Enter an email address and password.

Log in screen at Avira Password Manager

Register your account.

Registration screen at Avira Password Manager

Verify your account.

Verification screen at Avira Password Manager

You will then make a Master password. It should be a strong password and you should keep it in a safe place. Don’t forget it. You cannot recover the master password.

Create Master Password screen for Avira password manager - warnings that a forgotten master password cannot be recovered

Entering passwords

Now you’re ready to enter your passwords. Importing passwords saved in a browser is easy.

Click on import now.

How to add passwords - import to add by hand

Each browser has a facility for exporting saved passwords in the CSV format. CSV means Comma Separated Values. This is a standard format that many programs can understand and import.

Here you will save a CSV formatted file for each browser that you use, and then select them here to upload into Avira.

Import CSV file of passwords from browser

All importable passwords are listed. First make sure the fields are correct. If Avira has misidentified them, correct the headings.

blocked out details of list of passwords to be imported

Then you decide if there are any that you don’t want imported.

blocked out details of list of passwords to be imported - check boxes to include of exclude each

Click Import and Avira will do the rest.

For single passwords, instead of clicking on Import Now above, click on the big plus sign +.

You will see this form and you can fill it out.

screen for adding passwords by hand

Using the password manager

Each browser that you use should have an extension for Avira Password Manager. Install those and set them up to work automatically if that is how you want to use them.

Settings pane in Avira for the Chrome browser.

Avira auto fills a password if it has one. It also displays the red lock with a green number indicating how many saved passwords it has for this site. Click on the lock to see a list of the saved passwords.

Avira auto filling log in credentials into a log in screen

Mobile devices also have apps for Avira Password Manager. When you log in, the account will sync across all of your devices.

Password managers are getting easier. The amount of work depends on where your current passwords are saved. It is still worth the effort!

If you would like help with this process, just call or email and we’ll be happy to assist you! If you have specific questions, or if our terminology isn’t clear, please use our contact form to send us a message. Thank you!

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