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IntroductionThank you for your interest in PASSWORDMAKER. The purpose of PASSWORDMAKER is to enable you to securely and easily log in to Internet applications, such as websites, instant messaging, ftp, and others. With the proliferation of online resouces, you probably have usernames and passwords for banks, bill pay systems, email accounts, credit card websites, instant messenger, investment accounts, photo sites, blogging tools, and countless others. Most people have a few passwords they use for all of these accounts because it's easier to remember just a few. But this is incredibly risky.
What if you could use passwords unique as fingerprints for each and every one of your accounts, yet not have to remember those fingerprints? PASSWORDMAKER does just that. By using complex mathematical formulae, PASSWORDMAKER outputs the same unique passwords for you each and every time you provide it with the same input. And these passwords are unique across the globe (providing they are of sufficient length).
But only a genius could memorize so many unique passwords. Don't write them down on sticky notes for others to find; no, PASSWORDMAKER calculates them for you over and over again -- as needed -- without storing them so they can't be stolen. And if you use more than one computer (for example, one at work and one at home), it's child's play to synchronize them. There's even an on-line version for times when you are at a public computer and can't install any software.
The BasicsYou provide PASSWORDMAKER two pieces of information: a "master password" -- that one, single master password you like -- and the URL of a website requiring a password (for internet applications without URLs, such as instant messaging, you can make up any URL you like; e.g., aolinstantmessenger.com). Through the magic of one-way hash algorithms, PASSWORDMAKER calculates a message digest, also known as a digital fingerprint, which can be used as your password for the website. Although one-way hash algorithms have a number of interesting characteristics, the one capitalized on by PASSWORDMAKER is that the resulting fingerprint (password) does "not reveal anything about the input that was used to generate it." 1 In other words, if someone has one or more of your generated passwords, it is computationally infeasible for him to derive your master password or to calculate your other passwords. Computationally infeasible means even computers like this won't help! Other security features, such as PASSWORDMAKER's ability to paste generated passwords into web sites' password boxes, prevents hackers from using keyboard loggers and trojan horses to determine your passwords. For more details, visit the FAQ.
Installation and StartFor Netscape, Mozilla Suite and Mozilla FireFox users the install is done automatically from our website when you click on Downloads in the menu on the right and then click on Browser Extensions. Then, when the installation is complete, a restart of your browser is required to make PASSWORDMAKER available for use. Once you have successfully installed PASSWORDMAKER, there are three ways to open it:
- the PASSWORDMAKER option in the Tools menu
- the golden ring toolbar icon
- the <ctrl> ` shortcut key
For Mozilla and Netscape users, the toolbar icon is installed by default. For Firefox users, the toolbar icon must be manually added by using the View -> Toolbars -> Customize menu, and then dragging the golden ring icon on to the toolbar.
Once you've opened the extension using one of these methods, you are presented with the Basic Options screen.