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This browser extension tells you if your password has been exposed

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By Clark Howard Staff, Clark.com

It’s no secret that many of the companies we do business with every day aren’t doing a great job protecting our personal information. If there’s one thing last year’s massive Equifax data breach has taught us, it’s that we can never let our guard down when it comes to exposure of our personal information.

Quite often, we view the passwords we use on various web sites and apps as the lock that secures the door between the criminals and our most private data. But according to a site that tracks these things, Have I Been Been Pwned, almost a quarter of a billion passwords may have been breached in the last month alone!

PassProtect: A Chrome extension that promises to let you know if your password is unsafe to use

Thankfully, there are some good people out there looking out for us. A couple of them have created PassProtect, a Chrome browser extension that will automatically let you know if your password has been exposed in any of the myriad data breaches that have already occurred — and those that will almost certainly occur in the future.

The beauty of PassProtect is that, as a browser extension, it runs in the background so you don’t actively have to do anything other than install it to take advantage of it. As you interact with various websites that require passwords, it checks them against the lists of passwords (powered by Have I Been Been Pwned) known to be compromised. If it finds a match, it alerts you to change your password immediately. That’s it!

How to use PassProtect

  1. Make sure you are using the Chrome browser. If you don’t already have it, you can download it here.
  2. Go to PassProtect.io and click “Download.”
  3. Click the “PassProtect for Chrome” button.
  4. Give your computer permission to install and run the extension. When you see the dialog box below, you’re in business! Going forward, PassProtect will alert you any time you use a password that could be compromised.

Is PassProtect safe?

According to the site, “By using k-anonymity, PassProtect ensures no passwords are ever seen, stored, or sent over the network during the checking process.”

This means that your passwords are never actually associated with you during process. While nothing is 100% foolproof, Team Clark is confident in recommending this browser extension.

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