The Google Password Checkup tool is a free service that can anonymously compare your saved account usernames and passwords against company databases that have been exposed or leaked during a hack or security breach. If your information is found within these databases, the tool prompts you to change your password to secure your account.
This feature originally began as the free Password Checkup Chrome extension that needed to be manually installed on Google Chrome, but it's since been incorporated directly into the web browser and works as a built-in security setting that can be turned on or off.
The password checker feature has also been integrated into the Android operating system, so it can be used on Android tablets and smartphones.
How Does the Google Password Checker Work?
The Google Password Checker mostly works in the background while you surf the internet. When you visit a website that you've previously logged into, the tool immediately compares your username and password combination to several databases of confirmed leaked user account info and alerts you of any breach. It then prompts you to change your password to something different so that nefarious parties who have these databases of stolen passwords won't be able to access your account.
The username and password information is heavily encrypted during this process so that your data is not shared with Google. The Password Checker simply checks if there's a match but doesn't display the matched words or phrases or show them to any third-party.
For example, if Amazon was hacked and all of its users' login information was stolen, the next time you visited the Amazon website, the Google Password Checker tool would notify you of the data breach and that your account was vulnerable.
The Google Password Checker can also scan all of your accounts' login information at once via the passwords.google.com website. All you need to do is click Check passwords.
The Google Password Checker can only check the login information that has been saved to your Google account while using an Android device or the Google Chrome browser. To check the security of accounts you access on other devices or browsers, you need to use another tool, such as Firefox Monitor.
How Can I Turn off the Google Password Checker?
The Google Password Checker can be disabled at any time in the Chrome browser by clicking the ellipsis in the top-right corner and clicking Settings > More and turning off the switch next to Warn you if passwords are exposed in a data breach.
What Is the Google Password Checkup Extension?
The Chrome Password Checkup extension was the original build of Google's Password Checkup tool. While the extension is still live and able to be installed on the browser, it's no longer needed as the functionality is now built directly into Google Chrome.
Do I Need a Password Security Checker?
Using a password security checker is highly recommended as such tools can be a quick and convenient way to check if your personal information has been compromised in a data breach or hack. They require little technical know-how to use and most are completely free.
In addition to using a password checker, it's also important to use strong and different passwords for each service you access and to enable 2FA when available.
Where Can I Download the Google Password Manager App?
There is no Google Password Manager app as passwords are saved and checked directly within the Google Chrome web browser on computers and the built-in operating system on Android smartphones and tablets.
The passwords.google.com website can also be used to check passwords via any web browser on any device.
Do I Need a New Passwords.Google.com Account?
The passwords.google.com website which hosts the Google Password Checkup feature doesn't require the creation of a new account as your existing Google account works just fine. The same goes for the Google Chrome Password Checkup setting within the Google Chrome web browser which also uses your Google account.
However, if at any time in the future you want to make a new Google account, this password checkup feature works with it as well so you don't have to be worried about being locked into the same account forever.