The more we are online to do everyday things like manage CRM, create email marketing campaigns, send invoices and even manage project work with customers and partners, the more usernames and passwords we need to create and then recall.
There are many solutions to this problem, you can do a great job of creating and recording passwords – of course some are just assigned to you – or you use the same for all – but, that could cause some serious security issues too.
One solution that is slowly gaining some steam is something called OpenID. An OpenID allows you to choose a URL that becomes your unique and universal login for sites that accept OpenID.
From the OpenID site:
OpenID eliminates the need for multiple usernames across different websites, simplifying your online experience.
You get to choose the OpenID Provider that best meets your needs and most importantly that you trust. At the same time, your OpenID can stay with you, no matter which Provider you move to. And best of all, the OpenID technology is not proprietary and is completely free.
There is no complete source of who accepts OpenID, but the list is growing and you need to look for the OpenID logo. Here are two sites OpenID Directory and MyOpenId that list sites that currently utilize OpenID for login. Google has taken a step towards getting behind this standard by allowing Blogger users OpenID login and Microsoft earlier this year announced a development partnership to support OpenID.
First you have to pick your OpenID provider. Best to choose someone you already trust. I chose WordPress.com. Verisign, AOL and Technorati offer them. Here’s a list of places to get your OpenID.
For now, I can login to Plaxo, my WordPress blog, Basecamp, AOL, Blogger, Blinksale and Technorati using my OpenID. This is reason enough to get behind this, but I also have about 5 accounts for a tool I use daily called Basecamp for project work with various strategic partners. Each has a different login URL, username and password. With OpenID I can tie them all together, use one URL (the one I created), one login and I’m logged into all 5 at the same time with dashboard access to all. Now that’s reason to get excited.