FOLLOWING the recent eBay hack, it might be time to boost your online security with the help of a password manager. First it was the Heartbleed bug.

Now it’s eBay. Two major internet security threats in as many months mean the case for using a password manager is stronger than ever.

Last week, eBay bosses revealed that a database of customers’ names, encrypted passwords, email addresses, home addresses, phone numbers and dates of birth had been accessed by hackers.

Crucially, financial information wasn’t hacked (it’s stored elsewhere) but the online auction site has still emailed its 150 million users recommending they change their passwords to be on the safe side.

Do beware: in the wake of the alert, it’s possible scammers will pose as eBay, creating ‘phishing’ emails to try and lure users to reveal their details.

Genuine emails from eBay will NOT contain a link, only advice to login via to make the change.

Make sure you listen.

The Heartbleed bug, described as ‘catastrophic’ by experts, was a flaw in one of the most widely-used encryption tools on the internet, which meant usernames and passwords could be hacked from affected sites.

Again, users were advised to change their passwords – but only once the breech was patched, otherwise they risked revealing both new and old passwords to hackers.

All in all, this means a lot of password changes, and a lot of codes to remember (since experts recommend using a different tough-to-crack password on every site login).

And perhaps as a result of this wealth of information to remember, a recent survey by anti-virus firm Avast found that while 90 per cent of those surveyed intended to change their password after April’s Heartbleed bug scare, only 40 per cent actually did.

There is help at hand for those flummoxed by multiple password changes though.

LastPass ( is considered the league champion of password managers, systems that create strong passwords and store them all in one place.

Download the browser-based service and it will save your password every time you log into a site, then autofill it whenever you return to the site.

When joining a new website or updating your details on an existing one, the LastPass generator will create a tough-as-nails password.

LastPass recently underwent a redesign, but it remains free to use. A premium version is available for 12 dollars (around £7) a year, allowing access to mobile apps (on a variety of platforms) and multi-factor authentication, a super-tough encryption technique.

A small price to pay for peace of mind.