8 Password Storage Best Practices

Every organization, whether a small startup or a large enterprise, faces the difficulty of secure password storage. Due to a lack of resources, startups may first hire amateur developers who lack extensive expertise in proper password storage and management. If authentication is switched on so early in development, it may lead to poor password-storing processes.

As a result, the application's foundation gets built on subpar implementations. Of fact, the more important a module is for an application, the less likely the developer is to update it later in the project's life cycle for fear of breaking it. Therefore, the flawed authentication implementation is repeated until something goes wrong and someone takes the passwords of your users.

And so, good practice for application security is crucial at the development stage to avoid system breaches in the first place. However, nothing is completely secure. Therefore, you must take precautions to safeguard your users' credentials. In this post, we will go over the most significant password storage best practices.

What you shouldn't do

1. Insecurely share passwords

Accounts for retail and subscription services, such as Amazon and Netflix, are frequently shared among friends and family, while passwords for office applications are frequently shared among employees. If you share a password with someone who has been victimized by cybercrime, you become exposed as well if the shared password is hacked and used to access your account(s); hence it is important to safely share passwords. This excludes sticky notes, texts, emails, and papers exchanged inside. Even communication systems such as Slack can be dangerous because unencrypted data is retained for long periods of time and can be exposed during a breach.

Secure password-sharing portals are included in the top password storage managers, allowing you to share info without increasing your exposure to vulnerability.

8 Password Storage

2. Unencrypted password storage

Password lists and spreadsheets that are not password protected can jeopardize your privacy and security. Passwords are encrypted so that only authorized persons can read them. Password storage managers use AES-256 encryption, usually regarded as the best encryption type available, to safeguard passwords before they are saved online.

3. Use browser-based password managers.

Most browsers have password storage managers that record and recall your passwords, usernames, and even credit card details. Unfortunately, because passwords kept in browsers aren't routinely encrypted, this ease might come at the expense of security. Instead, delete passwords saved in browsers and generate store, and encrypt passwords with a safe, personal password storage manager.

4. Reuse passwords.

Reusing login credentials is a usual practice that can also be risky. Reusing passwords for many accounts reduces password storage security by exposing several accounts at a time if even one password is lost or stolen. A password manager with a password health score can assist you in breaking this habit by constantly creating lists of your weak, compromised, and reused passwords.

What you should do

5. Make unique and secure passwords.

Making strong passwords as random and unexpected as possible makes them less vulnerable to hackers and data breaches. A few extra characters can add years to the expected time to crack the encryption. Using a reliable password storage generator is the best approach to strengthen and randomize new passwords.

6. Use encryption for password storage

Hiding information in an unrecognizable format is a centuries-old practice that is also one of the most secure password storage practices accessible. Encrypting passwords and other sensitive data renders them unreadable or unusable to hackers, potentially reducing the risks of a data breach.

7. Use a password manager.

A password storage manager enables you to rapidly and simply implement best practices for password storage security. Automated generated passwords are secure and encrypted for password sharing and password storage in order to safeguard your details from hackers. The best password managers make using unprotected browser password managers and frequently changing your password a thing of the past.

8. Use 2-factor authentication (2FA)

To validate your identity, 2FA employs a second credential, such as a code given via an app. This significantly increases the difficulty for a cybercriminal to gain access to your account. Multifactor authentication (MFA) takes this password storage security practice a step further by incorporating identifiers such as fingerprints or facial recognition into the procedure. Knowledge, biometrics, and possession are the three types of 2FA and MFA identifiers.

Conclusion

Passwords are an essential component of your application. Password storage is important in the long run. Depending on the importance of the user data, storing a compromised password can bring your entire company down.

Poor password storage practices can lead to making your device vulnerable to password reuse from other applications. If user compliance falls, this can lead to user annoyance and lower compliance, increasing security threats. Worse, it may discourage customers from utilizing your service.

When developing critical software, security best practices must be implemented at all stages of the development process. Password storage security is only one aspect of the secure SDLC. Avoid criminals from getting access to your passwords in the first place. The Xcitium security scanner scans your code for known vulnerabilities and notifies you on how to resolve them. Visit for more.

FAQ section

A: The most effective way to store passwords is by creating a hash of your plain text passwords. This is a more effective way even surpassing encryption because it's irreversible.

A: Among various techniques which are common for securely storing passwords, hashing, and encryption are used. Hashing is more effective as it's one-way and it's quite impossible to decrypt to obtain the original value.

A: The data type which is effective for password storing is char (characters). String on the other hand should not be used for password storage as per the Open Web Application Security guidelines.

A: Based on the National Institute of Standards and Technology, a password length should be around 14 to 16 characters or even more than that. Also, it has been noted that password length is termed to be a leading factor when considering password strength.

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