Rant: The Password Conundrum and User Experience

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Perhaps the best decision I made this year on my productivity and security was signing up for Dashlane. I’m not maintaining all of my passwords for mobile, desktop and web in their secure, encrypted system. Truth is, I don’t even know what my passwords are anymore since I use the Dashlane Chrome Plugin to login via web, the Desktop Version for apps, and Mobile App for Mobile App logins.

Dashlane has a few additional features that I love. First, I can share passwords with authorized users – great for my office manager, accountant, project manager, and developers. I can provide them full access to see the password or limited rights to simply use it. And they offer an emergency contact that I can set. If, for any reason, I’m unable to give someone permission from my emergency list – they can request access. If I don’t respond in a certain period of time, they get access to my Dashlane account.

Since I’m using it across devices, networks, and platforms – I love having one central repository for every login as well as an audit trail. Dashlane also tells me which passwords aren’t complex enough and putting me at risk. Now I have unique, strong passwords that are different for every system that I log into. So if someone does get one of my passwords, they don’t get access to every service. And if they try to login to Dashlane, I have to authorize every new device that attempts to login.

Which brings me to my problem with passwords. Dashlane has made my life ten times easier but some applications are making my life ten times harder. I am absolutely sick of having to enter a password in every 2 seconds for the same platform. Update an app… you have to login. Download a song… you have to enter your password. Change administrative settings… you have to enter your password. This despite the fact that I’ve already logged in within the same session!

Don’t ask people to make a complex, difficult password that’s unintelligible on one screen… and then keep asking them to submit the password on every subsequent action throughout the user experience! With systems like Dashlane, I no longer memorize my passwords, I just copy and paste them. This means I have to login to Dashlane, copy the password, open the app, submit the password, and then keep pasting it on every request thereafter.

I love that some mobile apps are moving to 4-digit codes or swipe sequences rather than making me submit the entire 14 character password with caps, numbers, symbols, etc. I also love the fact that I can use my fingerprint on an iOS device to authenticate with some apps (everyone should have this!).

Offer people who have a very secure password a simpler option to advance through the platform. I don’t mind timing out and requiring a password again, but when I’m in the application, it’s absolutely ridiculous.

Disclosure: If you sign up for a Dashlane account with my Dashlane link above, I get 6 months of Dashlane premium!

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