Published: Fri, October 04, 2019
Tech | By Anita Cain

Google launches Password Checkup feature to flag hacked passwords

Google launches Password Checkup feature to flag hacked passwords

To avoid this sort of scenario, we should all use a password manager and Google provides a very good, free one that is synced across Android and Chrome.

Our Security Checkup automatically detects potential security issues with your Google Account and makes it easy for you to add extra protections to keep your account safe like removing old devices or unused apps that still have access to your account.

Passwords are here to stay. Google, when stating the reason for this act, warned against the common practice of using a weak password. Once pressed, Google will take all the user's passwords and check them against an internal database of over four billion user credentials that have been leaked online via breaches at other companies.

Finally (and sadly), only 45 percent of the respondents would change their password to an online account following a data breach.

Google is looking to secure users of its Chrome browser with a new security tool that monitors if passwords have been compromised. In that sense, it works nearly identically to the Chrome browser extension Google offers under the same branding. It appears Google is closely integrating the much-needed feature to its own Password Manager, which is essentially a virtual storehouse for user passwords. In other words, Google Chrome users had the option to download and install the extension to check if their passwords or log-in credentials have been compromised on websites in the past.

And last, the new feature can recommend what passwords need to be strengthened in order to make sure compromising accounts is more hard for malicious actors. You should create strong, unique passwords for each account you have, and then store those passwords inside password managers like Google's, which is available at this link.

One way to prevent this has been to use two-step verification (2SV) or two-factor authentication (2FA) solutions, of which Google has been the main proponent and a driving force over the past few years. Other times, it's the easy-to-guess passwords ("123456", anyone?). Users can go straight to the sites with bad passwords using the "Change Password" button provided next to each compromised or weak password.

The extension, which was released earlier this year, analyzes passwords and usernames to ensure they aren't part of any major security breaches that result in credentials being leaked online.

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