Google has released an extension for Chrome that lets you know if a password you are using is part of a known data breach. If you are one of my on- the-ball readers, your reaction should be somewhere between “Hold the phone” and “No flipping way”. After all, how the heck can they check if your password is part of a breach if it doesn’t actually read your password?
Well some clever people at Google have come up with a lovely little process that keeps everything nice and secure. So how does it work? Basically when you login to a site they take your username, encrypt and hash it and then send it to Google. Their databases of unsafe passwords are searched. When they find possible matches, they download that encrypted information to your computer. Password Checkup then decrypts the account details and checks for a match. As the final matching is done on your machine, Google doesn’t not know your account details. All of that is kept from their preying eyes.
To install this handy little tool:
1.Open the Customize and Control menu in Chrome.
2. Select More tools. Another menu appears.
3. Select Extensions. The Extensions page appears.
4. Click the hamburger in the upper left corner to view the Main menu.
5. At the bottom of the select Open Chrome Web Store.
6. Enter Password Checkup into the search field. Password checkup appears in the drop down list.
7. Select password checkup. The Password Checkup extension appears.
8. Click Add to Chrome. A confirmation dialog box appears.
9. Click Add extension.