Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

July 26, 2018
Warning! Safari stores your user names and passwords

Even though remembering user names and passwords is a convenient feature in Safari, it is also a major security risk that you may not have thought of, especially if you allow someone else to work on your computer.

I am bewildered by the actions of some of my customers; they are too trusting! I come into their home and fix their computer issues and on some occasions, they want to show me exactly what is going on with their system. They will literally open up one of their banking websites, enter their credentials, which many times they will say out loud in front of me and then they will go into their bank account. Readers: stop doing this. Don’t do it in front of anyone you don’t really know and that includes your computer guy!

In my case, they think that everything is all right because I write for this newspaper, or I am in their religious congregation, or we often see each other in the grocery store. But these are not events where you can say you know someone and where you can put all of your trust. Stop doing it.

The other issue that we are now faced with, and this also includes PCs, when you leave your computer with someone for repair, you may also be asked to give them your Apple ID and password so they can access your computer. I need these also to be able to work on a customer’s computer, but in doing so, we are giving them literal access to just about everything sacred on our computer. Even though this is a necessary thing, you can protect yourself by using those that have a good reputation, one that may be associated with a large company with a hope they are watchful over their employees, or someone you can really trust to protect your information. Please, keep these issues in mind when you are leaving your computer with someone.

It’s not all bad though because having your credentials stored in Safari is also very convenient. I recommend you periodically take a look at your user names and passwords and take the time to go through them and remove those you no longer use.

User names and passwords are stored in your Safari Preferences and they are protected by your Apple ID and password.

To view your user names and passwords, open Safari and at the top, select Safari and then Preferences. Next, at the top, select the Passwords tab and then enter your user password. In most cases, this is your Apple ID password or your user name password when you sign into your Mac.

Once you unlock your passwords, you’ll see the list of all those saved on your computer. At the top of the box and to the left, if you want to have your user names and passwords fill in automatically, checkmark the box: “AutoFill user names and passwords.”

Below in the list, click each entry and it will show you the password that is assigned to that website and user name. If you are not using the credential any longer, select it and then select “Remove” at the bottom of the box. It will ask you to confirm it by selecting “Remove” again. If you want to input a user name and password from this screen, you can select “Add” at the bottom to reveal the fields. Double-click each field to enter the information.

Don’t worry if you accidentally remove a user name and password. Once you enter it again, Safari will begin remembering it again.

For more than 15 years, Scott Lindsay has helped thousands of people better their skills, publishing more than 500 articles about Apple and Microsoft software, the computer and the Internet. You can reach Scott for comments or questions at ScottLindsay@live.com.

 

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