Welcome to CNET's directory of password managers. We've picked our favorite tools for taming the chaos of all those accounts and passwords. And let's be honest: Complex passwords are difficult to remember, so many users have defaulted to passwords like "password," "abc," their pet's name and other hacker-friendly naming conventions. In a world where password breaches can affect hundreds of millions of users, it's plausible that your passwords may already be floating around the seedier corners of the internet.
A password manager servers many purposes, all of them helpful. It keeps all your passwords under one encrypted and password-protected roof.
9 Best Free Password Manager Software For
It generates strong passwords for you and automatically inserts them when you log into different sites. It can even store payment information to simplify online shopping. Almost all these tools work on the principle that you create a master password for access to your identity vault, and then the password manager fills in individual user IDs and passwords for the sites and apps you use.
One benefit of this approach is, because you no longer have to recall the passwords yourself, you can give each site or app a different, complex and hard to remember password. All your passwords in one place? What if a hacker gains access to your master password? Likewise, if a hacker manages to breach the central vault of the password management company, it's possible that millions of account credentials could be stolen in a single hack. There are defenses to both these concerns.
9 Best Free Password Manager Software For 12222
Most password managers employ multifactor authentication, so access to your credential vault is granted only with both a correct password and a correct authentication code. That code exists only on a device you own, limiting the ability for someone across the world to gain access to your information. Master vaults are also usually protected by the vendors by encrypting your password information locally, before it ever leaves your devices. That information is stored, in an encrypted form, on the servers operated by the vendors.
In most cases, this is strong enough security. Even so, some people prefer to store all their passwords locally meaning only on their devices, not some central server. There are also issues of jurisdiction, where some users don't want their passwords stored in certain countries, in case of governmental intervention. Where possible, we've pointed out which services give you the option of determining how your passwords are stored.
We also give credit for the platforms supported, the browsers supported and whether or not the secure vault acts as a secure wallet, storing and organizing other information like credit cards. Almost all of them do. As for pricing, nearly every service offers a free trial. We've shared the single-user prices below, but many password managers offer family, team and enterprise plans as well.
Let's look at some of the top password managers. Check back often, as we'll be updating this listing as these services continue to evolve. It also allows your data to be isolated to specific regions in the world, so access outside those regions is not available and the data isn't stored in those regions. Like many of these products, Keeper supports bio-metric login finger print and face recognition on mobile. Keeper records can be shared with those who have a paid Keeper account. It picked up points because it allows you to designate a legacy or emergency contact who can have access to your data in the event of an emergency.
There is a family plan available, as well as plans for businesses and teams. Blur is the only all-in-one solution to protect your passwords, payments and privacy. Blur is built on an extremely secure Password Manager foundation, with a wide variety of unique online privacy features that have never been combined into a single product in the past.
An earlier version of the product was a browser extension called MaskMe, but it's morphed into a full security product for consumers. Blur offers both local storage and a cloud-based vault, as well as the usual password capture, autofill and password generator. What makes Blur unique is how it goes beyond the digital wallet concept to help you communicate while also protecting your identity.
It allows you to create one-use credit card numbers, so you're never giving your real number away. It also allows you to create a virtual phone number, so if you need to give someone your digits, you can keep your real number private. And the company puts its money behind its namesake: A portion of the license fee for every copy of Sticky Password sold is donated to the nonprofit Save the Manatee Club. A minor ding is that this product does not offer any form of digital wallet.
It does, however, have a robust form filling capability, bio-metric support for Touch ID on iOS and Android fingerprint scanning, and the option to keep only local copies of your password or store them in the cloud. If you need password access across platforms, you might want to look to another tool.
We liked that you can choose what region or regions in the world your password data is stored in, both to manage access speed and to handle any jurisdictional or government privacy concerns you might have. Unlike some of its rivals, LastPass is a cloud-only service. There is no local vault. The product works well inside of browsers that have installed browser extensions. One of LastPass's strongest features is its security challenge. It goes through your entire password database, determines how many accounts have duplicate passwords and which have weak password protection.
The product also allows you to automatically change some passwords without having to do so manually. This allows you to have a constantly changing set of identity information, which removes any value to hackers that older passwords may have.
- Best Password Manager - Lastpass vs. Dashlane vs. 1Password.
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LastPass has its own authentication app and, for some common websites, allows you to simply tap to authorize entrance. One of the most interesting features of Dashlane is what it calls Site Breach Alerts. The idea is that if any of the sites you access has had a breach, Dashlane will notify you. Of course, this is limited to those sites that let it be known they have a breach, and generally more major sites.
Even so, it's a cool feature that will both help you sleep better at night and lose sleep. Security is like that. It also offers a mechanism for importing from CSV files. You can choose to not store any password data on Dashlane's servers which utilize a patented security architecture , but to do so, you must disable sync, which means you're responsible for managing, backing up and moving your password data across machines. Even so, it's a good option to have. The web interface is excellent, displaying your entries like tiles.
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New categories are automatically generated when you add new entries in them. Pricing is another strength, or, rather, the lack of it. LastPass shines with its free plan. If you want to use LastPass as an individual, the free plan is your best bet. There is an argument for purchasing a Team or Business plan, though, as both provide significant value considering their price.
You can learn more about those in our LastPass review or sign up for a free account to try it. Keeper is a cheap, secure password manager that shines on iOS. The interface is one of the most attractive for Apple users, with a customizable color scheme and logical layout. The bottom of the user interface has a large plus icon that you can use to add new entries to your vault. Entries can further be organized into subfolders. What you can do with an entry is impressive. You can attach files, photos and videos to any entry and add as many custom fields as you want.
You can also take a photo or video while adding an entry, too, making it easy to tie a passport photo to your passport entry, for example. It uses IoT devices to verify your identity, which is a huge plus for Apple users. You can use your Apple Watch as a means of authentication without having to enter a second factor code, too.
Messages are encrypted before being sent, and you can set a self-destruct timer on highly sensitive ones.
It maintains a private media gallery, too. We like Keeper most for its features, pricing and support. Your data, for as long as you choose, is backed up automatically and synced across devices. Family plans come with 10GB of secure storage, which is also synced between devices. You can purchase more storage space, but the rate is high. The desktop application is available for Windows, macOS and Linux.
You can learn more about it in our Keeper review or sign up for a free trial to use it yourself. RoboForm is, undoubtedly, the easiest iOS password manager to use. It has an app-like interface reminiscent of icons on iOS devices. It has been updated for iOS 12 to support password auto-fill, too. RoboForm can store passwords, credit cards and identities, and you can use form auto-fill to enter information automatically when signing up for an account online or filling in a shipping form.
RoboForm offers a free plan you can use on iOS, too. You get extra features, too, such as offline access on your devices and cloud backup. RoboForm can store application passwords in addition to accounts. You can use it to automatically fill in your passwords in desktop applications, which is a huge time saver.
When we tested it, browser capture, form fill and application fill worked without issues. It has excellent security, too. That protects against brute force and dictionary attacks if your vault is compromised. RoboForm has a long list of settings, almost too many for the average user. You can learn more in our RoboForm review or sign up for a free account. You can learn more about that in our iCloud review. Safari will also suggest strong passwords. Adding or editing a password is horrible, though.
As with many Apple services, Keychain is meant to appear like magic, meaning true editing capabilities are revoked or hidden deep in the settings.
Create secure passwords and protect your accounts from attack
Using it on other devices is impossible, too. All your devices will have to be in the Apple ecosystem to use it. The hurdle for auto-fill on mobile devices has been massive for password managers, but the release of iOS 12 makes it easier than ever to use them on your Apple mobile devices, including iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch.
If you want to go the free and easy route, iCloud Keychain works. That said, it lacks the scope of other password managers, making it a poor, almost impractical, choice if you have cohabitating operating systems. Our first pick to bypass that issue, and gain access to an impressive list of features, is 1Password. While our selections have their strengths, 1Password has the most well-rounded feature set at a reasonable price. What password manager are you using on your iOS device? Let us know in the comments below and, as always, thanks for reading.
Table of Contents. Inexpensive Easy to use Travel Mode. No free plan. Visit 1Password. Dashlane Review. Visit Dashlane. Excellent free plan Unlimited entries Multi-device sync. Mediocre personal plan. LastPass Review. Visit LastPass. Excellent support KeeperChat Support for many browsers. Mediocre desktop interface. Keeper Review. Visit Keeper. Easy to use iOS app Excellent security Application auto-fill. Complex desktop application. Leave a Reply Cancel reply. Your email address will not be published. Change Like the Cape Weather.
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