How to Use the Firefox Password Manager

Plus, why you should set a Firefox primary password

Using Firefox's built-in password manager may not give you the ability to create strong, randomized passwords, but it will let you view all the passwords you've saved with the browser, without having to use a third-party tool. Here's how to save passwords in Firefox.

Having your browser save your passwords isn’t always the best option. If someone were to gain access to your account, they would also have access to all of your stored passwords. For those truly concerned about security, your best bet is to never allow your browser to save your passwords and use of a third-party password manager.

Using the Firefox Password Manager

To use the Firefox Password Manager, follow these steps:

  1. Open Firefox.

  2. Click the Menu button.

    Screenshot of the Firefox menu button.
  3. Click Preferences.

    Screenshot of the Firefox Preferences menu entry.
  4. In the Preferences window, click Privacy & Security.

    Screenshot of the Privacy & Security entry.
  5. Scroll down to Logins & Passwords and click Saved Logins.

    Screenshot of the Saved Logins button.
  6. In the resulting window click Show Passwords.

    Screenshot of the Show Passwords button.
  7. When prompted, click Yes.

    Screenshot of the Yes/No prompt.
  8. Locate the entry you want to view, and the username and password is ready. When you’ve finished, make sure to click Hide Passwords and then Close, to exit out of the Saved Logins window.

How to Protect Saved Passwords in Firefox

There's a flaw in this system, though. As it stands, anyone can access your saved passwords in Firefox. To prevent that, enable the Firefox Primary Password feature. Then, no one will be able to view your passwords, unless they have the Primary Password. We highly recommend using this tool. Third-party password managers also use a primary password, so you only have to remember one. Here's how to set a primary password in Firefox.

  1. Open Firefox.

  2. Click the Menu button.

  3. Click Preferences.

  4. In the Preferences window, click Privacy & Security.

  5. Click the checkbox for Use a primary password.

  6. When prompted, enter and verify a new password.

  7. Click OK.

Be sure that your password is not the same as any other password you use. And don’t forget that primary password. If you do, you won’t have access to your stored login credentials.

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