As a reader of this fine technology blog you no doubt are taking your security seriously. One of the most important things you can do to protect your personal data is adopting a strong password plan. I have recommended LastPass many times in the past – and it remains my password manager of choice.
The problem has remained the same since the dawn of the internet. People generally do not always use effective passwords. They’ll often use things like their birthday or the name of their pet in their login information. To make matters worse, people have a tendency to use the same password for multiple accounts. This happens because birthdays and pets are easy to remember. The same goes for recycling the same password for multiple accounts. In an attempt to get users to create better passwords, some companies like Apple force them to include special characters, numbers, and an uppercase letter in the password. Browsers offer to remember your password for you and all you have to do is set a good one. Another solution is to use a password vault. A password vault is an app that stores your logins. It allows you to set complicated passwords and remember them.
If you have a shared computer, multiple vaults can be used to separately store information for everyone that uses it. The vault locks itself automatically after a set period of time. If you walk away form your computer and forget to lock it, the vault and the information in it will still be safe.
Ice Cream Password Manager lets you store more than just your login information and it’s duly sorted by the type of information it is. You can mark information that you frequently use as a ‘Favorite’ but it is otherwise sorted into categories like Login, Credit cards, bank accounts, identities, passports, etc.
These categories don’t just sort information. Each one has fields that make it easy to enter information. For example, the passport category has essential fields like issuing authority, the date it’s been issued and when it will expire, your date of birth, etc.
Similarly, the Bank accounts category has fields for entering your bank’s Swift code and your account’s IBAN number. What this essentially ensures is that you enter all relevant information that’s related to an entry. You might have to take the time out to fill it all in but once that’s done, you’re never going to have to search online or through physical papers to locate the information you need.
Desktop App And Chrome Extension
The desktop app and Chrome extension don’t need one another to function but, if you have both of them installed your information is synced. The extension makes it easier for you to add login information. Every time you log in to a new domain, the extension offers to save it.
One advantage that comes with the Chrome extension is that it has a password generator. The password generator doesn’t just give you a random password. You can specify the length and how many special characters you need in your password.
The Chrome extension syncs all the vaults you’ve created, password and all. Like the desktop app, the Chrome extension locks itself after a period of inactivity and you need to enter your vault password to access your information.
Ice Cream Password Manager lets you schedule regular backups. In fact, you can keep multiple, incremental copies of your data.
Additionally, you can sync your information with Dropbox.
I mentioned early on that the Ice Cream Password Manager automatically locks itself after a period of inactivity. The app lets you choose what that period of inactivity is. You can also set it to automatically clear the clipboard one minute after you’ve copied any information from your vault.
Ice Cream Password Manager is an overall well developed app. It has a couple shortcomings. (1) it doesn’t lock down characters for known fields. For example, passport numbers are only 9 characters long. Similarly, IBAN codes are 14 characters long. In both these fields, you can enter as many characters as you like. This is problematic because you might accidentally repeat a character when entering your information and never know it happened until you try and use it.
(2) Another problem is that there is NO mobile app. We often need our passwords while on the run and this is a serious flaw. However if you want a free password manager this looks like a fairly good option and hopefully a mobile app is on the way.
Ice Cream Password Manager is pretty well made. It’s stable and the information is quick to sync between desktop and browser. There’s a Firefox add-on in the works so there isn’t much left wanting. If you struggle with remembering your password, or your purposefully keep simple ones, give this app a try. It will help you set complicated passwords and remember them. It will also make sure you always have all your important information in digital form on your computer at all times.
You can learn more about Ice Cream Password Manager here.