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Should You Save Passwords in a Browser?

Do you have the habit of saving passwords on the browsers itself? You might be making a mistake!

Saving the passwords in the browser is not a safe process, your credentials may get compromised. We do not recommend to use browser itself to store the passwords, using a Password Manager like Bitwarden is a safer solution.

While we have a bunch of reasons for not saving the passwords on the browsers, Let’s discuss some most important reasons.

Why should we not use browsers to save passwords?

Physical Access to the system: It is very easy to check the saved passwords within the browsers. Anyone who can have physical access to your system can easily know your passwords along with your username. You can check your saved passwords on any browsers like Chrome or Firefox. So why not others?

Flaws behind Google’s smart lock features: On Chromium based Browsers like Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge Google has introduced Smart lock features to protect your passwords. Smart lock feature will ask for windows credentials to view your saved passwords. It can prevent any other person from checking your passwords who even has physical access to your system. But this can be easily bypassed by the following process.

Process 1: Just go to the website, as passwords are already saved on the browser Google will automatically fill the credentials for the site or will ask your permission to auto-fill. Auto-fill the passwords on the password tab, then you can click on the eye button next to the password to reveal it. However, some sites do not have the eye button to reveal the password. Here process 2 will work.

Process 2: If sites do not have the eye button option to reveal the passwords. Right click on the site and go to Inspect. Double-click on type=”password”, and replace password with text. Hit Enter and close the inspector page. Instead of stars your password will be showing on the password tab.

Malware Infection: Hackers can infect your systems with malwares through website Ads or any other methods which can easily track these passwords and send them to the hacker. However using a good Ad Blocker may minimize the risk.

Browser specific usage: You cannot use your saved passwords on cross browser, which means if you save one password to Google Chrome, you cannot use it for auto filling on Firefox.

However, Firefox has a unique feature, it allows you to set a primary password to protect other saved passwords. Even while auto filling for the sites, the primary password needs to be provided at the first place, then only auto-fill will work. But this feature is by default turned off and there are very few who actually know about this. If you want to set this primary password you can check here.

The Solution

From the above discussion we can see that Firefox has a clear edge over other browsers by enabling a primary password. But still cross browser usage is still missing. So, We always recommend using a good Password manager to store passwords. They can be used cross browsers as well as cross platforms and with advanced encryption systems like military-grade AES 256 cipher and other standards your credentials are well protected too.

Picture of Arghyadeep Nath

Arghyadeep Nath

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