Got passwords? Of course you do. Like it or don’t, usernames, login IDs, and passwords are the nature of being online in the 21st century. I view passwords the way I view sodium (salt) in a diet. No single can of soup– with plenty of sodium– will cause much of a health problem, but too much sodium in everything we eat will have a negative effect on our overall health.
Passwords work much the same way. One is easy to remember. A few dozen usernames and passwords needs a place to keep and manage them. A hundred or two is cause for concern. Fortunately, the online world is full of password managers. Unfortunately, many are complicated to use, have dozens of features that do not get used, and they come with an ongoing subscription price tag.
Here’s a quick look at a favorite password manager app that works almost everywhere and money can’t buy it.
The app is called Buttercup and it works on just about anything– Mac, iPhone, iPad, Windows, Linux, and Android devices. The desktop and notebook version looks familiar.
What you get is the standard list of standard features for a password manager app. Buttercup comes with 256-bit AES encryption so your passwords cannot be accessed without your password. All you need is one.
The interface is straightforward and intuitive. Create multiple categories of usernames and passwords in folders on the lefthand sidebar. Click on one and select an item in the category, and then view, add to, or edit the details in the main righthand column.
Did I mention that Buttercup is free?
Two of the most important features– beyond encryption– for password managers are 1) synchronization between devices, and 2) extensions to use the passwords in a browser. Apple has that built-in to macOS and iOS via the Keychain Manager, but third party password managers require browser extensions.
Buttercup has an extension for Google Chrome, the world’s most popular and most used browser, and for Mozilla Firefox, the third most used browser. What about Safari? It’s on the Buttercup roadmap but not yet available.
Regardless, what you get in Buttercup– for free– is a very secure, very intuitive to use password manager that synchronizes usernames and passwords between devices. That makes it a good and secure repository for email, online banks, websites, and almost anything else you want to keep secure and private but easily accessible.