25
Tue, Jun
3 New Articles

RoboForm Turns "Duh Password" Factor in Your Favor

Compliance / Privacy
Typography
  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

Ever print out your passwords just before leaving on a trip? That's not necessary with the right password management software.

 

As I was getting ready to leave for COMMON in Nashville last spring, I wondered if I wouldn't need at least a few of the dozen or more passwords I have filed away that provide access to various Web sites, including the back of the MC Press Online news portal where we post articles. No password, no access to the site. No access, no news gets posted. Since passwords are usually filled in automatically by Windows, I don't have to commit them to memory (though I do know one or two).

 

I realized there might be passwords that I would need while I was out of town, and, since they aren't stored on our network, I likely wouldn't have access to them. I keep them in a note buried deep in my ACT! database. (Yes, I'm one of the few people on Earth who doesn't use Outlook. I actually tried to convert to Outlook a couple years ago but gave up after several hopelessly confusing attempts at mapping and exporting the various nested ACT! databases. I'll just stay with what I have, thanks, until I find a free month or two with absolutely nothing else to do but play with the more than 12,000 records in my contact management software. But I digress.)

 

So there I am, trying to gather up all my papers before the show and brilliantly decide to put them into a three-ring binder. What's missing? My passwords. So I carefully print out the two pages that have all my passwords on them, punch holes, and carefully place the pages into my binder. Then I think, "Yikes, what if I lose my binder?" So I take a Sharpie permanent marker and carefully start crossing out the passwords that are really sensitive, such as to my online bank account, which I probably won't need at the conference. Now I have my passwords--but do I? I have some of them, but not all of them, though I think I probably have the ones I will need. And while I'm going through this exercise, I'm also thinking, "Man, this is ridiculous. I hope no one ever finds out that I'm handling my passwords this way." Then I ask myself, "Well, maybe other people put their passwords into a binder too because, at least that way, if someone breaks into their computer, they can't steal their passwords!"

 

I kept this password secret to myself until the other day when a friend of mine said he couldn't read a story published on our Web site since he couldn't log into the site because he couldn't remember his password! I thought, "Good grief. I'm not the only one." He also confided that he usually uses the same password everywhere, which he admitted was probably not a smart idea. Then he asked for my advice on how to store them, and I said, "Man, I don't know; I now keep them in a binder that says 'Nashville'!"

 

I knew there must be a better way, and fortunately I stumbled upon RoboForm from Siber Systems. The free utility (there is a Pro version for which they charge) has been out for several years and has received rave reviews from just about everyone who has tested it. I downloaded a copy and launched it and immediately was taken by its simple interface and easy quick-start tutorials. There is some complexity there, as its 33-page manual will attest, so learning how to use it effectively will take a bit of time, but it's not so involved as to prevent someone from getting up to speed quickly.

 

Let me explain first that when you download the application, you actually get two separate programs, RoboForm and RoboForm2Go. RoboForm2Go gives you the ability to carry all your passwords with you on a flash drive wherever you go and still keep them safe (particularly if that flash drive is an IronKey drive, which we discussed last week). The software memorizes your passwords and logs you in automatically. This last feature saves a lot of time. All your passcodes and sensitive data are stored on the USB drive, not on the machine, so once you remove the drive from the computer, the data is gone. This is especially useful if the subprime mortgage meltdown has caused you to lose your home and you are now using a computer at the library to do your online banking.

 

The software fills in long registration and checkout forms with one click--say, if you're ordering software that you actually have to pay for from a site like newegg.com. It also encrypts your information with AES-level encryption to completely foil anyone who tries to learn your passwords.

 

Both RoboForm and RoboForm2Go (there is also a U3 version for those drives that support it) have a password generator that allows you to possess passwords that are a little more secure than your child's first name. You can set the strength of the passwords by their length and character type.

 

The best thing about RoboForm? You have to remember only one password, and RoboForm remembers all the others. If you can't remember one good strong password, then go ahead: tattoo it on your arm. It will make for great conversations about how you escaped from that motorcycle gang in Arizona on your last cross-country trip.

 

RoboForm is one of the many free or low-cost software products found on the Windows Marketplace site in the Add-ons for Internet Explorer 7 section. We'll be discussing more of them and several of the more numerous Firefox add-ons in coming weeks.

Chris Smith

Chris Smith was the Senior News Editor at MC Press Online from 2007 to 2012 and was responsible for the news content on the company's Web site. Chris has been writing about the IBM midrange industry since 1992 when he signed on with Duke Communications as West Coast Editor of News 3X/400. With a bachelor's from the University of California at Berkeley, where he majored in English and minored in Journalism, and a master's in Journalism from the University of Colorado, Boulder, Chris later studied computer programming and AS/400 operations at Long Beach City College. An award-winning writer with two Maggie Awards, four business books, and a collection of poetry to his credit, Chris began his newspaper career as a reporter in northern California, later worked as night city editor for the Rocky Mountain News in Denver, and went on to edit a national cable television trade magazine. He was Communications Manager for McDonnell Douglas Corp. in Long Beach, Calif., before it merged with Boeing, and oversaw implementation of the company's first IBM desktop publishing system there. An editor for MC Press Online since 2007, Chris has authored some 300 articles on a broad range of topics surrounding the IBM midrange platform that have appeared in the company's eight industry-leading newsletters. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS

LATEST COMMENTS

Support MC Press Online

$0.00 Raised:
$

Book Reviews

Resource Center

  • SB Profound WC 5536 Have you been wondering about Node.js? Our free Node.js Webinar Series takes you from total beginner to creating a fully-functional IBM i Node.js business application. You can find Part 1 here. In Part 2 of our free Node.js Webinar Series, Brian May teaches you the different tooling options available for writing code, debugging, and using Git for version control. Brian will briefly discuss the different tools available, and demonstrate his preferred setup for Node development on IBM i or any platform. Attend this webinar to learn:

  • SB Profound WP 5539More than ever, there is a demand for IT to deliver innovation. Your IBM i has been an essential part of your business operations for years. However, your organization may struggle to maintain the current system and implement new projects. The thousands of customers we've worked with and surveyed state that expectations regarding the digital footprint and vision of the company are not aligned with the current IT environment.

  • SB HelpSystems ROBOT Generic IBM announced the E1080 servers using the latest Power10 processor in September 2021. The most powerful processor from IBM to date, Power10 is designed to handle the demands of doing business in today’s high-tech atmosphere, including running cloud applications, supporting big data, and managing AI workloads. But what does Power10 mean for your data center? In this recorded webinar, IBMers Dan Sundt and Dylan Boday join IBM Power Champion Tom Huntington for a discussion on why Power10 technology is the right strategic investment if you run IBM i, AIX, or Linux. In this action-packed hour, Tom will share trends from the IBM i and AIX user communities while Dan and Dylan dive into the tech specs for key hardware, including:

  • Magic MarkTRY the one package that solves all your document design and printing challenges on all your platforms. Produce bar code labels, electronic forms, ad hoc reports, and RFID tags – without programming! MarkMagic is the only document design and print solution that combines report writing, WYSIWYG label and forms design, and conditional printing in one integrated product. Make sure your data survives when catastrophe hits. Request your trial now!  Request Now.

  • SB HelpSystems ROBOT GenericForms of ransomware has been around for over 30 years, and with more and more organizations suffering attacks each year, it continues to endure. What has made ransomware such a durable threat and what is the best way to combat it? In order to prevent ransomware, organizations must first understand how it works.

  • SB HelpSystems ROBOT GenericIT security is a top priority for businesses around the world, but most IBM i pros don’t know where to begin—and most cybersecurity experts don’t know IBM i. In this session, Robin Tatam explores the business impact of lax IBM i security, the top vulnerabilities putting IBM i at risk, and the steps you can take to protect your organization. If you’re looking to avoid unexpected downtime or corrupted data, you don’t want to miss this session.

  • SB HelpSystems ROBOT GenericCan you trust all of your users all of the time? A typical end user receives 16 malicious emails each month, but only 17 percent of these phishing campaigns are reported to IT. Once an attack is underway, most organizations won’t discover the breach until six months later. A staggering amount of damage can occur in that time. Despite these risks, 93 percent of organizations are leaving their IBM i systems vulnerable to cybercrime. In this on-demand webinar, IBM i security experts Robin Tatam and Sandi Moore will reveal:

  • FORTRA Disaster protection is vital to every business. Yet, it often consists of patched together procedures that are prone to error. From automatic backups to data encryption to media management, Robot automates the routine (yet often complex) tasks of iSeries backup and recovery, saving you time and money and making the process safer and more reliable. Automate your backups with the Robot Backup and Recovery Solution. Key features include:

  • FORTRAManaging messages on your IBM i can be more than a full-time job if you have to do it manually. Messages need a response and resources must be monitored—often over multiple systems and across platforms. How can you be sure you won’t miss important system events? Automate your message center with the Robot Message Management Solution. Key features include:

  • FORTRAThe thought of printing, distributing, and storing iSeries reports manually may reduce you to tears. Paper and labor costs associated with report generation can spiral out of control. Mountains of paper threaten to swamp your files. Robot automates report bursting, distribution, bundling, and archiving, and offers secure, selective online report viewing. Manage your reports with the Robot Report Management Solution. Key features include:

  • FORTRAFor over 30 years, Robot has been a leader in systems management for IBM i. With batch job creation and scheduling at its core, the Robot Job Scheduling Solution reduces the opportunity for human error and helps you maintain service levels, automating even the biggest, most complex runbooks. Manage your job schedule with the Robot Job Scheduling Solution. Key features include:

  • LANSA Business users want new applications now. Market and regulatory pressures require faster application updates and delivery into production. Your IBM i developers may be approaching retirement, and you see no sure way to fill their positions with experienced developers. In addition, you may be caught between maintaining your existing applications and the uncertainty of moving to something new.

  • LANSAWhen it comes to creating your business applications, there are hundreds of coding platforms and programming languages to choose from. These options range from very complex traditional programming languages to Low-Code platforms where sometimes no traditional coding experience is needed. Download our whitepaper, The Power of Writing Code in a Low-Code Solution, and:

  • LANSASupply Chain is becoming increasingly complex and unpredictable. From raw materials for manufacturing to food supply chains, the journey from source to production to delivery to consumers is marred with inefficiencies, manual processes, shortages, recalls, counterfeits, and scandals. In this webinar, we discuss how:

  • The MC Resource Centers bring you the widest selection of white papers, trial software, and on-demand webcasts for you to choose from. >> Review the list of White Papers, Trial Software or On-Demand Webcast at the MC Press Resource Center. >> Add the items to yru Cart and complet he checkout process and submit

  • Profound Logic Have you been wondering about Node.js? Our free Node.js Webinar Series takes you from total beginner to creating a fully-functional IBM i Node.js business application.

  • SB Profound WC 5536Join us for this hour-long webcast that will explore:

  • Fortra IT managers hoping to find new IBM i talent are discovering that the pool of experienced RPG programmers and operators or administrators with intimate knowledge of the operating system and the applications that run on it is small. This begs the question: How will you manage the platform that supports such a big part of your business? This guide offers strategies and software suggestions to help you plan IT staffing and resources and smooth the transition after your AS/400 talent retires. Read on to learn: