What’s a username generator and why do you need one?

Woman at laptop

If you’re a frequent reader of the blog, you’ll know that we often encourage you to use our password generator either found on our website or in your LastPass browser extension. Using strong, unique passwords is essential to protect you from breaches.  

But you may not have heard about the value of using unique and random usernames. We’ve launched our new username generator, so we thought it was a great time to give you the scoop on this great tool.  

What is a username generator? Username generator screenshot

The tool does exactly what it says on the tin. It will generate a secure, random username for you instantly. You can select different criteria for your username so it fits your needs. For example, you can select the “Easy to Say” checkbox to get a username you can pronounce. This is useful if this username is going to need to be seen and read by others – like on an online forum or community. Or you can make it totally random for accounts where no one, including yourself, needs to read the username – like a bank account or shopping website. You can also select how long you’d like the username to be or if it should include symbols or numbers. 

Once you select and enter your random username, LastPass will save it your vault exactly how it saves your usernames now. So next time you visit your bank account LastPass will fill it in, but this time it will have your random username and your random password.  

Why would someone use a random username?  

The short answer is it’s an added layer of security. You don’t want it to be easy for hackers to find you across multiple websites. If one of your accounts is compromised, hackers will try to use that username and password on other sites.  

Not reusing passwords is one layer of protection, and having unique usernames is another. You’re doubling your security. Ultimately, you just need to ensure that you don’t have the same username and password combination anywhere across the internet, and this is another tool that helps you do that.  

Also, sometimes your preferred username isn’t available. You’re telling me there’s another Leah Bachmann out there who wants my username? Yes, it’s annoying. But now it’s easy to just generate a random username with our tool and LastPass will save it in your vault.  

Get started 

Give the username generator a try. Next time you create a new account, simply generate a username and a password and hit save when prompted by LastPass.  

You’ll be surprised how easy it is since your workflow will not change. LastPass will still save and remember your login information for you. You won’t even notice that you have a random username.  

30 Comments

  • Barry says:

    I agree that many sites require you to use your e-mail address as the username, and don’t even allow the option of using anything else. At some point, if enough users complain, hopefully that practice will change for most web sites. It would definitely be more secure as discussed above. Thanks for the informative article.

  • Jayden says:

    I am a total security freak, but never even thought about different usernames. Thanks a ton for sharing Leah!
    Sadly for games, I will still prefer one name ;)

  • James says:

    I love the idea. Are you going to add the “generate user name” as an option in web browser extensions or in the vault (similar to generate password) so we don’t have to navigate back to https://www.lastpass.com/username-generator each time we want to use it?

  • Terrance Boyle says:

    you can use a random username generator to create an email account name too. Say inQUirIx@outlook.com

  • Amie says:

    Never thought about the username. Thanks for the inspiration. Next time I’m going to test your username generator.

  • Larry says:

    How do you deal with websites that use your email as the user Name? Most require the use of email although a few ask for either emai or user name. Thanks

    • Leah Bachmann says:

      Hi Larry,
      You’re right that a lot of websites do require you to use your email address. If it’s truly required there’s no getting around that. Just make sure you have a unique and strong password for every account – especially those where you need to use your email address.

      Thanks!

    • Chocolate Coated Liquorice says:

      I use an email masking service for most websites. This service generates a unique email address that then automatically forwards any emails to me.

      It’s particularly useful for those websites that require email registration, and don’t send sensitive information in their email correspondence (eg used for Reddit, not my bank)

    • Matt Nelson says:

      Some email services like Gmail allow you to create email aliases that could be used for one-off email usernames for those where you want that additional layer of security.

      Excerpt below from: https://fieldguide.gizmodo.com/how-to-use-the-infinite-number-of-email-addresses-gmail-1609458192

      One trick you may or may not have picked up about Gmail is that you can add in periods anywhere in the front part of your address and it makes no difference whatsoever: john.smith@gmail.com works just the same as johnsmith@gmail.com. What’s more, you can add a plus sign and any word before the @ sign (e.g. johnsmith+hello@gmail.com) and messages will still reach you.

    • Safiyeh says:

      There are many email-address masking services. The one I use offers unique addresses upon request and a browser extension. In addition to the extra security, the service’s dashboard allows me to switch off any addresses from which I no longer wish to receive mail.