changed master password on 1 password 6 desktop app- still recognizes old MP

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  • Ben,
    When I say delete I also mean modify local vault password in future.

    Also, what is the character limit (if any, words or random symbols) for master passwords of local vaults, primary or secondary?
    Thanks

  • If there is a character limit, will 1PW only recognize the limit and ignore the rest of the very long password or will the password simply not be recognized?
    I ask this since some websites do this truncation for passwords beyond the imposed character limit

    Thanks

  • LarsLars Junior Member

    Team Member

    @1pwuser31547

    So to clarify, the Primary local vault contains the encryption key(s) for the secondary vault(s) but the specific password(s) for the secondary local vault(s) are used to encrypt the local vault data at rest.

    Essentially, yes.

    During cloud sync the individual secondary vault password(s) along with the account secret key are the keys for encryption. Correct?

    Nope. The Secret Key is a function of 1Password accounts; it is not used and not possible in standalone 1Password.

    If syncing only with LAN is the Secret Key also used or does this account Secret Key only apply to cloud syncing?

    See above answer.

    Given all this, what are the consequences of forgetting/losing a secondary vault password but still knowing the primary vault password?

    It means you would not be able to access that vault anywhere else except any 1Password app into which you'd already added it as a secondary vault. If you sync that vault to a folder, for example, you'd have an OPVault file...but you could not then take that vault's OPVault file, copy it or try to sync it to another computer, and try to open it -- because you'd be asked for that vault's password, not the Master Password of whatever setup you had it in on another device. If such a thing were to happen - you realize you've forgotten the vault password for secondary vaults - you'd want to create a new vault (and probably write down the password for it somewhere safe), move all the items over from the old one into the new one, then delete the old one.

    ...what is the character limit (if any, words or random symbols) for master passwords of local vaults, primary or secondary?

    I think there may no longer be one, but I wouldn't swear to it. At one point, I think there was a 64-character limit for Master Passwords and vault passwords, but if I'm recalling correctly that may have been removed. My question to you would be: do you need more than 64 characters? A truly random password of 23 characters is roughly equivalent to 128 bits of entropy, which is more than can be "brute forced" with all known computing power in the age of the universe. I will admit to having a longer Master Password than that, but I'd say that past the 128-bit level, you're likely getting diminishing returns in terms of security for the additional increase in how long it takes to type out such a password. It's up to you, of course, that would just be my suggestion. Hope that's helpful! :)

  • Thanks so much Lars and Ben for your responses.

  • BenBen AWS Team

    Team Member

    You're very welcome. If there is anything else we can do, please don't hesitate to contact us.

    Ben

  • Hi Lars, Ben

    @Lars "It means you would not be able to access that vault anywhere else except any 1Password app into which you'd already added it as a secondary vault. If you sync that vault to a folder, for example, you'd have an OPVault file...but you could not then take that vault's OPVault file, copy it or try to sync it to another computer, and try to open it -- because you'd be asked for that vault's password, not the Master Password of whatever setup you had it in on another device..."

    So if I get a NEW (Apple) device and WLAN sync to the 1 PW app I would not be able sync the secondary vaults if forget their passwords?
    Or is it sufficient to unlock the app on the new device (with the primary vault password and authenticate with 2FA) and then the secondary vaults would automatically sync to that new device?
    (I understand that a primary local vault's password opens the apps not the account password).

    I don't have Dropbox, so when you sync and backup to Dropbox, the file exists as an OPVault file which can be accessed from one's Dropbox account or is it like syncing and backing up primary vault to iCloud where one can't directly access the data, only having it is a back up and syncing mechanism?
    Forgetting the secondary vault password would not matter if you use Dropbox solely for back up and sync to your 1 PW app and not to directly access vaults, right?
    Accessing one's data is certainly most securely done via it's respective native client rather than through a web client (or even perhaps another 2nd party native client)- right?

    Therefore, if I only access my data through the 1 pw app (Apple devices), and I don't need the secondary vault password to sync to the 1 PW app on a NEW device, then there really should be no significant problem in not knowing these secondary vault passwords, right? (Even printing/saving secondary vault files as PDFs only requires knowledge of the primary vault password.)

    I haven't made the psychological leap to sync some of my most sensitive data to ANY cloud server
    I use WLAN sync and have an account.
    The WLAN sync works just fine it's just a bit of work relative to 1 PW cloud syncing so let me ask some questions:

    I understand that the 1 PW cloud is very secure due to MP+ secret key derivation of MUK, SRP and end to end zero knowledge encryption (not present with Dropbox/iCloud).

    HOWEVER, let me play Devil's advocate for syncing to Dropbox with respect to secondary local vaults and their password:
    If I choose to sync the secondary vaults to Dropbox, to strengthen the security of this data, I could chose a very long, complex password of 256 bit entropy (as I would not need to remember it as specified above).
    This password would then be of equal complexity as the 256 bit decryption key.

    Also, with local vaults (primary and secondary), changing the master password also rotates the personal cryptographic key set which is not the case with a change in master password and/or secret key in personal accounts.
    So if an attacker had compromised my device, he/she would have my ket set which could, at least in theory, unlock a 1pw offline despite changing the account MP and Secret key extracted file (of course very difficult--would require breach in server).
    The only remedy would be to delete the entire account, get new keys and then change passwords to all files.
    Compare this to local vaults, where changing the master password would create new cryptographic keys.
    (By the way, why does/how can this property exist with standalone vaults and not personal accounts?)

    So to summarize, if secondary local vault data in Dropbox were accessed by a server breach (or data intercepted in transit) the attacker would try to brute force a complex password of 256 bit entropy (it could be made 256 bit since in this case here it wouldn't need to be remembered).

    Similarly, if 1 PW account data were captured from a server breach or in transit, the attacker would need that secret key of 128 bit plus the master password of say maybe 40 bit, (since it would need to be remembered), so sum total obstacle would be 168 bit password.
    256> 168, but still both uncrackable today. Theoretically the attacker would need to crack a 168 bit equivalent password and then try to derive the decryption key correct?

    If this all correct then, respectfully, how can you make the argument that syncing to 1 PW cloud is the MOST secure syncing option?
    (Also data on the device AT REST would be protected only by your MP of 40 bit entropy vs 256 in this case.)

    Would the answer be something like this :
    1. The risk of data interception during sync is less with 1 PW servers because of zero knowledge encryption and SRP- adding more protective layers during transit.
    2. So with my example here with a no need to remember local vault password, despite 256>168, both are impossible to crack today.
    3. Since the reward of less data interception risk is much greater than the risk of a decrease in encryption (practically negligible at the current time ) at the present time you're better off with syncing with 1 PW.

    Is this all correct?

    I really appreciate your reading this and sorry it had to be so long winded- I just want to make myself clear so I can better understand your product. As I've said before, I love reading these forums- I learn so much from them!

    Thanks.

  • Sorry meant say:
    ...so if an attacker had compromised my device, he/she would have my decryption ket set which could, at least in theory, unlock offline a 1pw extracted file despite having changed the account MP and Secret key (of course very difficult--would require breach in server)...

  • Sorry meant say:
    ...so if an attacker had compromised my device, he/she would have my decryption ket set which could, at least in theory, unlock offline a 1pw extracted file despite having changed the account MP and Secret key (of course very difficult--would require breach in server)...

    Also to clarify, the significance about this property of a primary vault opening secondary vaults is twofold:
    1. You can never get locked out of it since the primary vault opens it.

    1. You do not ever need to enter it again (in my example above if only using the 1PW app) after initially setting up the secondary vault.

    So you can very easily secure that secondary vault by making it’s password very long and very complex with 256 bit entropy (or more for that matter) and simply access the vault by opening the primary vault.

    Thus the difficulty in remembering and using/ typing a very complex, high entropy password is neutralized. It appears you can have the best of both worlds, in this scenario.

  • LarsLars Junior Member

    Team Member

    @1pwuser31547

    So if I get a NEW (Apple) device and WLAN sync to the 1 PW app I would not be able sync the secondary vaults if forget their passwords?

    If you have 1Password set up on any device where you know the Master Password for the Primary vault, you will be able to unlock the data -- and that includes any secondary vaults which you have previously added to 1Password on this device.

    Here's how it works: when you first create a new standalone 1Password setup on 1Password for Mac, you're asked to give it a Master Password. When you do, your default vault is created -- it's always called Primary. If you decide to create new secondary vaults, you're always asked to provide a password for each secondary vault you create, as in this example:

    That password unlocks that vault -- but because the encryption keys it generates are also "escrowed" inside the Primary vault, you don't need to remember each vault password every time you go to unlock 1Password. Here's where it can get problematic, though: if you create the vault and give it a unique password but then, because you don't have to USE that password (you instead only use your Master Password), you eventually forget the password you used for that secondary vault, then you can never open that vault outside of the context it's currently in: your 1Password for Mac setup. If you're syncing your data via Dropbox, say, and you acquire a new device, when you go to sync your data, you'll need to sync each vault -- and that will require the vault passwords for each of those vaults. If you don't remember the passwords for the secondary vault(s), you won't be able to sync (or open) them; the only place you can still do that would be inside 1Password for Mac where you first created it -- and only because they decryption keys for that secondary vault were stored inside the Primary vault, so you can unlock with only your Master Password (which you DO remember).

    So if I get a NEW (Apple) device and WLAN sync to the 1 PW app I would not be able sync the secondary vaults if forget their passwords?

    Right.

    I don't have Dropbox, so when you sync and backup to Dropbox, the file exists as an OPVault file which can be accessed from one's Dropbox account or is it like syncing and backing up primary vault to iCloud where one can't directly access the data, only having it is a back up and syncing mechanism?

    When you use either Folder sync or Dropbox, you are creating OPVault files which can be seen/manipulated in the file system itself. They can't be opened, because they require 1Password to do that, but unlike iCloud (where those files aren't really user-accessible since they use CloudKit and not iCloud Drive), with Dropbox and Folder sync, you CAN see them.

    Forgetting the secondary vault password would not matter if you use Dropbox solely for back up and sync to your 1 PW app and not to directly access vaults, right?

    Yes, but I would not consider Dropbox to be a real "backup" under most circumstances; it is a sync file. The difference may seem academic, but it's not. Yes, in certain emergencies, having your data synced via Dropbox can function as a backstop of sorts (house burns down with all your devices? Once you get new devices, just sign into Dropbox, then download 1Password and point it at those Dropbox files). But a genuine backup is a series of iterated snapshots of various moments in time, that you can revert to previous states if you need to. Dropbox (or folder, iCloud) sync is not that: it is a constantly-updated copy of your current data. Standalone 1Password does make genuine backups for you -- these can be found in the 1Password > Preferences > Backups section; click "Show Files" to see the actual library folder containing the backups.

    Accessing one's data is certainly most securely done via it's respective native client rather than through a web client (or even perhaps another 2nd party native client)- right?

    You cannot open/unlock standalone 1Password data via any web client -- not icloud.com, not your Dropbox account. There is no "web interface" for this. Yes, you could sign into your Dropbox account and delete the OPVault sync file. But you can't open it directly.

    Therefore, if I only access my data through the 1 pw app (Apple devices), and I don't need the secondary vault password to sync to the 1 PW app on a NEW device, then there really should be no significant problem in not knowing these secondary vault passwords, right? (Even printing/saving secondary vault files as PDFs only requires knowledge of the primary vault password.)

    You DO need the secondary vault password to sync on a new device. If you don't ever plan to acquire new devices and add those secondary vaults to those devices, then yes, you'd only need the Master Password -- which would allow you to add/sync the Primary vault only on the new device. But if you want to sync additional secondary vaults on new devices, you'd need the vault passwords for those secondary vaults.

    I use WLAN sync and have an account.

    You have an account? We use that term very specifically, it means: a 1password.com account, which is most definitely cloud-based. Did you mean that you have 1Password data? If so, that is standalone, not an account.

    If I choose to sync the secondary vaults to Dropbox, to strengthen the security of this data, I could chose a very long, complex password of 256 bit entropy (as I would not need to remember it as specified above). This password would then be of equal complexity as the 256 bit decryption key.

    I'm going to mostly summarize the rest here, rather than go point-by-point as I have up to now to correct a couple of misconceptions. There are two (main) ways an attacker might try to acquire your data when you use any cloud-based sync: either directly on your device by compromising it remotely (malware) or physically (stealing a physical device), or by acquiring the data from the server on which it resides (or in transit). If someone compromises your device by installation of remote malware (say, socially engineering you) to the point where they're able to execute arbitrary code running as root on your device, it can no longer truly be thought of as your device: a competent attacker with that level of access would be able to observe process memory, record keystrokes to obtain your Master Password, and much more. An attacker who goes the low-tech route of stealing your phone or computer would have to first gain entrance to your user account and then, to decrypt your 1Password data, they'd need your Master Password. In this case, since they would have your device now (and you don't), they can't install a keylogger and wait for you to enter the Master Password; they would have to attempt to brute-force it. That's why we stress to users that their Master Password is the backbone of their 1Password security, and offer tips on How To Choose a Good Master Password.

    Yes, you could choose a very long, randomly-generated, un-memorizable password for all secondary vaults, if you wished -- though as I mentioned above, you'd need to keep copies of those Master Passwords somewhere available to you. But remember: each one of the decryption keys for those vaults with the long passwords would be accessible to the attacker who was able to crack your Master Password, because those keys are "escrowed" in standalone 1Password in the Primary vault. If an attacker has your device, cracking the Master Password gives them everything in all vaults.

    So to summarize, if secondary local vault data in Dropbox were accessed by a server breach (or data intercepted in transit) the attacker would try to brute force a complex password of 256 bit entropy (it could be made 256 bit since in this case here it wouldn't need to be remembered).

    I find it difficult to imagine a scenario where an attacker would be able to breach Dropbox in such a way that they could access/download your secondary vaults, but not your Primary vault, if all your data were synced via Dropbox. You could sync your Primary vault via iCloud, so it wouldn't be part of your Dropbox account, or you could simply not sync your Primary vault at all, I suppose (though if you did that, any data in the Primary vault wouldn't be available to you anywhere else), and that would mean the only vaults available to an attacker who was able to breach Dropbox would be these secondary vaults with the super-long passwords. I'll continue this in another reply as this one's getting long.

  • LarsLars Junior Member

    Team Member

    @1pwuser31547 - Remember, what you're envisioning applies only to the scenario of a server breach and not a breach of your device, either physically or remotely, where your Master Password (not those secondary vault passwords) would be all an attacker needed. I wouldn't necessarily assume any given user's Master Password is equivalent to only 40 bits of entropy, but using your assumptions, yes, 168 is less than 256.

    Because the Secret Key in a 1Password account is simply a CSPRNG-generated random character set equivalent to roughly 128 bits of entropy, it would have been easy for us to simply generate character-strings equivalent to 256 bits of entropy. Do you know why we didn't? Well, a few reasons, but this post from 2013 on a related topic contains the essentials of one of the main reasons:

    I just said that moving [from 2-to-the-128] to 2-to the-256 hiding spaces makes the number of [guesses] unbelievably, enormously, mind-bogglingly bigger. But Molly would be wrong to think that this made it more secure. Why? Because searching through “only” 2-to-the-128 hiding spaces is already so mind-bogglingly, amazingly and unimaginably hard that there is no gain in making it harder [...] I’m estimating that, as an extremely fast estimate, all of the computing power on Earth turned to trying AES keys couldn’t check more than 2-to-the-75 keys per year (and really that is a very very high estimate). At that rate, it would take more than half a million times the age of the universe to go through half of the 2-to-the-128 possible AES keys.

    In other words, at some point the law of diminishing returns applies. This is something we keep a constant eye on, and as the landscape changes, so do we. But for the moment, at least, 128 bits of entropy in your Secret Key (along with a good strong Master Password only you know) does a more than adequate job of protecting your encrypted data, should it be acquired from 1Password's servers by force or guile. More importantly, as you guessed, good security is more than a game of comparing unimaginably large numbers. It's not just SRP that helps, but also things like (for 1Password Families and 1Password Business accounts) the ability to recover accounts if people forget their Master Password or lose their Secret Key. That's something that was never available or possible in standalone 1Password and still is not. But the most secure vault in the world isn't of much value to you if your valuables are inside it and you lose the key. Account Recovery makes it possible in a secure way to do what was not possible previously. That's why we describe a 1Password account as the "most" secure way to use 1Password -- it's not simply a numbers game. I hope this was helpful. :)

  • Lars, thanks so much for your detailed response.

  • ag_anaag_ana

    Team Member

    On behalf of Lars, you are welcome!

    If you have any other questions, please feel free to reach out anytime.

    Have a wonderful day :)

  • I'm using 1Password on my PC with Chrome. I signed into my account and changed the account password. But I can only sign in with the old password. I can then see the changed password in what I think is a Personal vault. How do I get the new password to be accepted on the initial sign in?

  • Corey_CCorey_C

    Team Member

    @philipchasen

    Do you, perhaps, still have a vault called "Primary" in 1Password on your PC? If so, you will need to delete that in order to change the password 1Password expects on unlock.

  • How do I know if I have a Primary vault?

  • How do I know if I have a Primary vault?

  • The Primary vault (local only, not on 1 PW server) will always unlock the app, not the password for your 1PW.com account password.
    As stated above you must either delete the Primary vault or change it’s password to your account password if you want that particular password to unlock the app.

  • Corey_CCorey_C

    Team Member

    @philipchasen

    On a Windows PC, open 1Password and click View>Show Vaults, then see if one is listed in the list there.

    On a Mac, click the rainbow circle in the top left corner and check for the same.

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