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Online Identity Management with Proton Pass

A couple of months ago, Proton — the company behind the end-to-end encrypted email service Proton Mail — officially launched its password manager Proton Pass. Proton Pass is an end-to-end encrypted password manager.

At its core, a password manager is a tool that helps you generate secure passwords and save them so you never forget a password again. If you care about your security and privacy, you should use a password manager because passwords are still the first line of defense for most online accounts.

Password managers make it easy to follow security best practices, like using a passphrase instead of a password or using a unique password for every website, without worrying about forgetting your passwords. It also saves you time by letting you log in with one click when you return to a website. Some password managers can store generation codes for one-time passwords so that the password manager can become their two-factor authenticator. Users can also create notes for sensitive information that aren’t related to online services, such as credit card information and Social Security numbers.

What Makes Proton Pass Stand Out?

There are several options when it comes to password managers e.g., Dashlane, Bitwarden, 1Password, etc. So, what is it that makes Proton Pass different?

Apart from the password generation functionality, a standard feature on all modern password managers, Proton Pass will also enable users to create a "hide-my-email alias." This randomly generated email address acts as a relay point between the online service and your actual email account, preventing service providers from identifying or tracking you.

Proton Pass is the only password manager in the world that also protects your online identity. It's an identity manager for your digital life.

Today, email is identity. It’s your digital passport that identifies who you are online.

When you sign up for a new online account, you usually give over two valuable pieces of information. The first is obviously a password, and the second is your email address. Of these two, the password is far less valuable. Your password is easy to change, and if you follow password best practices, your password will be unique so that a leak doesn’t compromise another account.

Furthermore, if the website follows security best practices, your password will be hashed so that it can’t be exposed in a breach.

However, this isn’t the case for your email. First, an email address is incredibly difficult to change. Second, websites can’t hash your email address because they need it to send you messages, so email addresses are almost always leaked in data breaches. And once your email is leaked, your real-life identity can be connected to the website you signed up for (which can be embarrassing). Leaks can also expose your email address to attackers who might send you spam or dangerous phishing emails.

While most password managers can protect your password, Proton Pass goes further by also protecting your email, which is arguably the more valuable of the two pieces of information websites have from you.

Protecting Your Online Identity

When you sign up for an online service, Proton Pass will suggest a secure password and store that in an end-to-end encrypted digital vault. But Proton Pass will also enable you to create a hide-my-email alias.

An email alias is a randomly generated email address that sits between a third party (like Amazon, Facebook, or Netflix) and your real email account. Not only does this prevent the third party from identifying who you are, but it filters out trackers and other marketing tools before forwarding the messages to your main inbox.

If you sign up for a website using a hide-my-email alias and it gets hacked, it can only expose that alias. Your real email address would remain safe. If this happens and you start to receive phishing emails or spam via that alias, you can change the alias email address or simply disable it.

The steps to use email aliases are as follows:

  1. Enter your email aliases in online forms: Whenever you’re about to sign up for a new account or subscribe to a newsletter, Proton Pass can automatically create a unique email alias so you don’t have to use your personal email address.

  2. Receive emails safely in your inbox: When your alias receives an email, Proton Pass instantly forwards it to your inbox without the sender ever knowing your personal email address. You can also reply without revealing your email address.

  3. Never worry about a data breach again: If your email alias is ever leaked or sold to spammers, you can deactivate it to stop receiving unwanted emails. The unique alias lets you know which company sold your email. At no point is your actual email at risk.

Advantages of Using Email Aliases

  1. Secure your data: Hackers won’t obtain your real email address if you use a unique alias for an online service and it suffers a data breach. They'll only have a single-use email address that you can easily turn off. This will greatly reduce credential stuffing attacks.

  2. Protect your privacy: Aliases give you control over your identity. You never have to disclose your true email address, so you cannot be tracked and profiled by advertisers.

  3. Control spam: If one of your email aliases is sold or leaked and you start to receive spam emails, you can easily turn off the compromised alias.

  4. Stay organized: Make a new alias whenever you create an account, shop online, or sign up for a newsletter.

  5. Prevent phishing: Aliases add an extra layer of anonymity between hackers and your inbox, helping to prevent phishing attacks, one of the biggest online security threats.

In today’s digital age, email is more than communication – It’s your identity and worth protecting. Learn more about protecting your digital identity by visiting the Proton Pass website.

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