Passwords are a fact of life in the digital age.
We all know the perils of using one password for all our accounts. (It’s basically like unlocking every room and safe in your house and then leaving the front door wide open.) However, creating unique and strong passwords for every account can be overwhelming.
Third-party password managers are a safe choice. Internet browsers are another popular option. Chrome is an internet browser that Google created and released in 2008. Initially designed for Windows XP, Chrome is now compatible with any platform, including Macs, PCs, and all types of mobile devices.
In 2022, Chrome dominated the global desktop web browser game, claiming nearly 70 percent of the market share. Its popularity is mainly due to its ease of use and customization options, such as extensions for ad blockers, language translators, etc.
Google Chrome has made it easy to save and store your passwords in your browser, so you never have to remember them or type them in manually. Plus, it’s free and already at your fingertips.
But is this method of storing your passwords secure? Here is all you need to know about Chrome password safety.
Is Google Chrome Password Manager Safe?
While better than having no password manager, Chrome password safety could be better. One of the most significant Chrome password security issues is that Chrome wasn't built to be a password manager. It's an added feature—an afterthought. Chrome was solely constructed and optimized to be a web browser.
For this reason, Chrome password safety will never be on par with what a dedicated password manager can offer.
It’s like the difference between buying a croissant from your local coffee shop and buying a croissant from a patisserie owned by a baker trained in France.
Specialization produces a superior product, whether it’s pastries or password managers.
But Chrome’s password security issues go deeper.
Chrome Passwords Are Basic and Fixed
One of the basic features of Chrome passwords is that it offers to create "strong" passwords, a long series of letters, numbers, and characters that would be nearly impossible for a human to guess offhand.
The problem is that although these passwords look complex, they usually need to be corrected, and you need the option to customize them. You can't make them longer, add more characters, or do anything beyond giving Google permission to submit and save its suggestions.
Regarding password safety, Chrome forces you to take the passenger seat while it drives, all in the name of convenience.
Is the trade-off between control and convenience worth it? The short answer is no.
Can Google Password Manager Be Hacked?
We saved the biggest problem with Chrome password safety for last.
When you use Chrome passwords, or any browser-based password manager for that matter, getting access to your accounts is as simple as gaining access to your device.
Anyone who lays hands on your device at the office, the cafe, or the subway (if you accidentally leave your briefcase behind) can access every account you have saved in Chrome passwords.
This leaves you wide open to being hacked.
Most of us sync our Chrome accounts across devices. It’s easy to forget which devices have access. Check that here.
A dedicated password manager protects you by requiring you to log in with a separate “master” password. It automatically locks your passwords after a specific amount of time has passed.
How Does Chrome Create and Store Passwords?
The convenience of Google Chrome is what hooks most users. It's free and doesn't require installation.
Here’s how it works. The first time you enter a password on a new website, Chrome will send a prompt that asks if you want to save it. You can choose “Save” or “Not Now.”
For many people, that little pop-up is a welcome sight. They click “Save” and sigh in relief that they don’t have to commit the password to memory or record it somewhere, which can make it vulnerable to loss or theft.
However, the relief they feel is somewhat misplaced.
Is a Dedicated Password Manager Worth It?
This is a choice that only you can make. Consider the following scenario if you’re unsure about disabling Chrome passwords and switching to a dedicated password manager.
Imagine what would happen if your passwords were compromised. You wake up one day, and without warning, you can no longer access your email (your personal and work accounts), your online banking, your usual online shopping sites, your stored cloud data, or your social media accounts. Everything is locked away and out of your reach.
Or worse, you don’t know you’ve been hacked until later when you get a huge credit card bill or something else that reveals someone stole your identity.
This would be a life-altering event, wouldn’t it? Trying to undo the consequences would be extremely costly in time and money.
A password manager can prevent this kind of upheaval from happening to you. And while password managers aren’t free like Google Chrome, they are well worth the investment.
An Alternative That Doesn’t Share Chrome’s Password Security Issues
TeamPassword offers a fast, safe, and easy solution for storing and managing your passwords that doesn’t leave you vulnerable to Chrome password security issues. Another plus is that TeamPassword has a Chrome extension that holds all your personal and company login information. And even if someone has access to your device, they cannot get through to your TeamPassword account without knowing your master password and having access to your Google Authenticator.
TeamPassword is an app dedicated to cybersecurity. Passwords aren’t just an extra feature; it’s all we do.
An additional feature is our password generator and password strength tester. Our customizable password generator is the way to go if you are stuck trying to create a password. You could also test to see if your current passwords are secure. It’ll also give you an estimate of how long it’ll take to be hacked.
Create and customize strong passwords you can use with any browser or device, and access all your passwords whenever and wherever you need them.
With TeamPassword, your passwords are secure, even if your device falls into the wrong hands.
With all that being said, while using the Chrome password manager seems more convenient, it’s not the most secure way to hold your passwords.