How many times have you tried to drum up a memorable password for a new account only to give in and type in a old one instead? You’re not alone. Right now the average person has around a hundred online accounts, and that number is doubling every five years. Many of us still rely heavily on our memory to recall passwords for all those accounts, and that leads to password reuse, which is risky for privacy and security.
Making password management easier for people is top of mind for Sandy Sage, Senior Staff Product Manager for Firefox Lockbox. I caught up with Sandy to hear more about Firefox Lockbox, her take on digital privacy and where she falls on the pronunciation of GIF.
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What are you most excited about at Firefox right now?
Firefox Lockbox! It’s our unique take on password management, taking the passwords that people already save in the browser and breaking them out of the browser, giving people the ability to use them wherever they are.
Given that there are password managers already out there, what makes Firefox Lockbox special?
Other password managers provide solutions for those who already know about the security risks associated with passwords. Lockbox is for the rest of us who have issues just keeping track of our passwords. We know we should do more to protect ourselves online, but it’s not always easy or convenient. Or sometimes we just don’t have the right information to make good choices.
Password management is part of our online hygiene. If we think of it like dental hygiene, Lockbox isn’t the correct dentist that chastises a patient for not flossing everyday. Lockbox is the good dentist that makes flossing a little easier, more available, and celebrates when a patient flosses once a week.
What do you do to protect your privacy online?
My take on privacy isn’t about the big dramatic changes. It’s the little things we do. I use Firefox’s tracking protection to prevent the unwanted stalking. I manage my settings on Facebook to control who sees what I post. I avoid providing personal information just because it’s a field on a form or a questionnaire. It’s the little things. I try to keep privacy in the back of my mind, but if I can’t set and forget it, I’m not likely to do it.
What privacy or security issue would you like people to think more about?
I’d love to see people think more about their digital identity the way they do their physical identity. Usernames and passwords are the keys to your online identity. I’d like to see people think about and keep track of usernames and passwords like they are the physical keys to their house or car. You wouldn’t use the same key to your home for your vehicle. You keep those separate and distinctive. That said, I think it’s incumbent upon us at Firefox to give people the tools to conveniently do that. And that is what we’re trying to do with Lockbox.
What is one digital tool that you consider essential to your daily life?
I’d have to say Slack. Professionally with project management, it’s all about effective communication. I collaborate with a number of people and teams here at Mozilla, and Slack makes that easy. I also use it to talk to my husband and friends, so I have a collection of various Slack teams. I use it because it creates personable communication — animated GIFs and emoji responses, but it actually allows us to cut through the cruft and get to the details.
How do you like to disconnect?
I go outside. Camping or hiking or swimming in the summer. In the winter we snowboard and sled. We snowshoe. If it’s an outside adventure, I’m usually in.
Coffee. I use enough cream and sugar to count it as breakfast.
Cats or dogs?
Both. I live in pet hair.
Android or iOS?
iOS, but i’m moving to Android. Being a cross platform product manager means I get to use both.
Where do you get your news?
I’m an NPR fanatic.
Walk, bus, bike or drive?
I ride a scooter to work.
Wildcard! I did not see that coming. How about books: audio, digital or print?
All flavors of books. I read at night on my Kindle. I read audio books in the car. And I always have trashy paperback novels on vacation.
What’s the last thing you saved to Pocket?
I’m pretty sure it’s an article about product management.
What’s something that people would be surprised to know about you?
My first job — my high school job — was painting parasols at Busch Gardens.
When it comes to GIFs, hard or soft G?
I’m OG on the internet, so it’s [hard-G] GIF.
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Firefox Lockbox debuted as a Firefox Test Pilot app for iOS devices in July, and will be rolling out to Android later this year. Sign up to get notified when it’s available.