Sunday, February 03, 2008

Take Your Log-ins with RoboForm2Go

How many passwords do you have for the websites you visit? Since Firefox or IE fills many of them in for you, do you even remember what half of them are? With this nifty RoboForm2Go software and USB, you can pop into Internet cafes during your travels and not have to remember 7 passwords for 32 sites. Plus it keeps you secure by eliminating worries about keystroke loggers or cookies left behind on a strange computer.

RoboForm is billed as a "password management solution" and in my tests it performed its tasks admirably. I plugged the USB into my home computer, did a quick install, and went about my business. As I logged into sites, the software saved my user name and password info, asking me if I wanted to password protect each one individually. (There's also a password for the program itself, in case you lose the USB or leave it plugged in somewhere.) The first time I filled my vitals into a form, it remembered that info so I could do it in a snap in the future.

The first time I tried to use this on a public computer I was denied: my local library has software installed that keeps you from opening any executables. So this won't help me there. When I went on a friend's computer though, it worked like a charm, putting a toolbar into the browser and automatically filling in my specific log-in information for each site I visited. You even have a tab on the browser listing every site you've logged into from your home computer. When I was ready to go, it erased my tracks from the USB (nothing is stored on the computer itself) and it was like I was never there.

It will also generate random passwords as well, if you need to change them constantly for a site you manage. If you want to see all the other nifty functions and security features, check out the Roboform website.

If you buy the software with a $9.95 256MB USB drive, it's dead easy to use and you can load the drive up with all your essential documents when you take it on the road. Or you can buy the software and download it onto your own thumb drive. I found the pricing info on the website to be confusing, with several different prices for the software (from $20 to $40) and no single price for the pre-loaded USB. Dig around and figure out what works for you. There's a free version you can try out for 30 days to see if it's worth the money.

If you spend a lot of time on other computers, this will certainly help you stay secure, surf faster, and sleep better and night. I'm definitely taking it on my next international trip.


Anonymous said...

"$9.95 256MB USB drive"

I wouldn't even bother with that little capacity. 256MB. Is that a joke?

Tim said...

Well, it depends on what you're using it for. I've had all my work, travel, and personal documents and spreadsheets on one this size for years and it's only half full. Unless you're trying to carry around files best stored on another device (like MP3s or video) it's plenty.

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