RoboForm 7 and RoboForm Everywhere Review

Reviewed by: Howard Carson, February 2012
Published by: Siber Systems, Inc.
Requires: Almost any current web browser version that accepts plug-ins or add-ons including Microsoft Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, Opera and Google Chrome; versions available for BlackBerry OS, Android, Mac OS X and Apple iOS (for iPod Touch, iPhone and iPad).
MSRP: US$29.95 (RoboForm), $39.95 (RoboFormToGo), $9.95 (RoboForm Everywhere)

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Siber Systems has been plugging away at RoboForm for many years. During that time, the software has evolved to the point where it seems to be the most versatile and robust, directly/remotely accessible password vault on the market. There are arguments for and against having a single, universal password vault or password keeper for all of your personal and online needs, but we're firmly in the "for" camp. Personally, I've been using a couple of them for almost twenty years. Siber Systems remains absolutely close-mouthed about its security - and good for them - but the fact seems to be that the company's wall of silence and secrecy surrounding its security systems seem impenetrable. As of this writing, RoboForm is at version 7.6.4 and that's what we tested.



RoboForm arrives in the form of a download (although you can get it in the box from Amazon and other software retailers) which installs in Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari (the three browsers we used for this review) as a plug-in/add-on. Roboform also works with Google Chrome and with the Opera browser. We didn't test Roboform extensively with Chrome or Opera but it installs and works properly with both browser and we didn't notice any problems.

There are three core products for you to play with: RoboForm (the browse plug-in/add-on), RoboForm Everywhere (a remote account at Siber Systems which is used to automatically sync the RoboForm database on all your systems - laptop, desktop, etc. - so that you've always got all the latest information available to you everywhere), and RoboForm2Go (which is a USB stick/flash drive version of the software). We tested the RoboForm plug-in/add-on and RoboForm Everywhere.


We tried to break RoboForm by using it alongside plug-in/add-on combinations selected from hundreds of apps, but couldn't find any obvious conflicts. In fact, what we did find was almost always a conflict between poorly written freebies and other marginal nonsense that is freely available online. Our advice? If you don't really and absolutely need a particular browser plug in/add-on, don't install it.

Roboform requires some basic configuration which initially consists of selecting a user name, local secure password and a master password. Once that's done, you're expected to add your personal information including name, address, postal code/ZIP code and so on, as well as at least one credit card for use during online payments at various sites you might visit and use. After that, every time you hit a login page for some site to which you belong - you name it: a bank, Facebook or some other social networking or lifestyle site, an online store you've dealt with before - Roboform will notice your login details and ask if it can store the information for future reference. You can keep the deault site name that Roboform detects or you can type in a custom site name. At sites you've never visited before, at which you're setting up a new login or account of some sort, Robofrom will store the information you input or you can actually use Roboform to generate a unique password and then store all the login information. Quite a few new Roboform users balk at the complex, unique passwords generated by Roboform mainly because they're simply not used to the idea that they no longer have to remember any of that; all they have to remember is their Roboform login.

Roboform Everywhere is a handy little utility which is really just a secure pipeline to the secure server system at Siber Systems. It's possible to manually copy/transport all of the Roboform database to an installation on any number of other computers and mobile devices. Roboform Everywhere makes it dead easy though, so it's highly recommended. Once you've installed Roboform on your main machine (home or business PC, Mac or laptop), install Roboform Everywhere. It will store a copy of your Roboform database at Siber Systems and allow you to download it and populate each new installation on different devices. Roboform Everywhere requires no other effort on your part, because as long as you've got an Internet connection for any of your machines and devices, anything new you enter in any installation of Roboform will be added to the local database on your other machines as soon as they make themselves available online. Very handy and very useful.


Seriously now, how much do you value personal information security in a world in which every corporate and casual activity is designed to figure out where you are physically located at any given time, what flavor of coffee you drinking right now, what kind of car you drive, how much you pay in rent, who your friends are, what movies you watch, what music you like, what your latest photos are all about, who you care about, what you purchased at a clothing store last week, etc., etc., ad infinitum. Vive Periculose (that's "Live Dangerously" for all you non-Latin speakers) if you must, but a secure password vault that you can safelyand easily access almost anywhere you happen to be will make it easy for you to help maintain high security passwords and keep prying eyes and minds out of your life and business. That's kind of priceless, so $29.95 is dirt cheap as far as we're concerned.

Cons: There's not much to complain about. Integration in Chrome and Opera could be better. Clearly the best installations - the ones in which Roboform never, ever loses track of what web site/login you've hit - are in Internet Explorer and Firefox. The last few versions of Roboform for Apple Safari have been vast improvements over the earlier versions.

Pros: If you don't already have Roboform or one of the competing secure personal information vaults, get one. Get Roboform. You can continue to struggle or manage or lope along with self-managed security and what study after study reveals to be terrible password security, or you can just get Roboform and relax to some extent, confident that a worthwhile product is minding the door. Top marks for Siber Systems. Highly recommended.

KSN Product Rating:



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