Best Password Managers

According to a study commissioned by NordPass, the average person has approximately 100 passwords (related article can be found in Security Brief New Zealand website). This number has steadily grown from 70 to 80 passwords in 2019. Moreover, this number is still expected to grow as people become increasingly inclined to download various applications and create several accounts because of the pandemic.

As people spend much time indoors, they download countless applications for various reasons, whether it’s for entertainment, shopping, exercise, or other online resources. These additional applications prompt users to create accounts, thereby increasing the number of passwords they already possess.

Here lies the problem. Given that people are required to keep track of hundreds of passwords, they no longer put an effort to create a highly secure one. They abandon the sense of security for convenience and fast recollection. That’s understandable because they have too many to remember. However, this scenario poses a serious security concern.

The quick remedy to this dilemma is to rely on your browser’s autofill feature. Thanks to this feature, we rarely feel the impact and hassle of remembering all those passwords because our browsers fill them out when we access our accounts. Although this is a convenient feature, it puts us in a situation where we are too complacent, thereby rendering us susceptible to cyberattacks and worse, identity theft.

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Use Password Managers Instead

There are at least a couple of ways to get through this password dilemma. First, you can choose to use the same password for all your accounts. You may even rotate several, easy-to-remember passwords, and this strategy might work. However, this is also risky. Imagine if someone will gain access to that one password you’ve been using, then you can say goodbye to your precious data.

The alternative is to put in some effort to come up with truly random passwords that are secure, complete with special characters, numbers, and lowercase and uppercase letters. But is this the most practical way? Probably not.

What if we tell you that you can use another alternative? Password managers are tools that help you come up with secure passwords, let you organize, and for added convenience, allow you to access these passwords across multiple devices while safeguarding them from threats. Think of them as multifeatured password keepers.

What are the Best Password Managers?

A lot of password managers are in the market right now, but for this article, we narrowed down our criteria to a few items so you can decide which one is the best depending on your requirements. We’ve curated this list based on the products’ price, availability of tech support, ease of use, and of course, their features.

We took the liberty of gathering the best password managers in 2021. Here are our picks for the best password managers to try:

1. NordPass

The most affordable password manager in this list

While most password managers include one or two additional features to get an edge over their competitors, NordPass offers several added features that include a password generator, unlimited password storage, and log-in and web form autofill.

NordPass comes from the same company that developed NordVPN. The company hopes to replicate its success in the VPN industry and bring the same level of expertise in the password management arena.

NordPass

What’s unique with NordPass is the choice of algorithm that it uses for encryption. XChaCha20 is a type of algorithm that is less vulnerable to certain types of cyberattacks (example, cache timing). Even a supercomputer capable of guessing a billion keys per second will probably take a billion years to crack this algorithm’s code.

  • Folders – This NordPass feature is the equivalent of a vault in other password managers. It allows users to organize their passwords depending on their use, such as social media, work, business, and so on.
  • Available in Both Mobile and Web – With this feature, you can have access to your passwords anytime, anywhere.
  • Flexible Payment Plans – NordPass is probably one of the few password managers offering a monthly plan. This allows you a certain room for flexibility when it comes to your finances.

Other Details of NordPass:

  • Encryption: XChaCha20
  • Free Plan: Unlimited passwords, 1 device
  • Subscription: Starts at $23.88/year
  • Unique Feature: Money-back guarantee (30 days)

2. 1Password

Military-grade encryption for an affordable price

1Password’s combination of affordability and reliability is an offer that’s hard to refuse. Its web and mobile apps are also intuitive and simple to use but make no mistake. 1Password is dead serious when it comes to protecting your sensitive data.

1Password utilizes the industry-standard 256-bit AES encryption while maintaining a zero-knowledge policy when it comes to its user’s data. Therefore, you can be rest assured that the information that you initially shared with this password manager are not stored in a server somewhere.

1Password

Here are some of the key features of 1Password:

  • Multiple Password Vaults – This feature lets you organize your passwords a step further by segregating them into groups. In particular, you can organize your passwords based on different criteria, such as for personal use, business, and so on.
  • Travel-Safe Feature – It allows you to control which vault will show up when you travel. This is especially handy when you’re traveling outside of the country, and you’re just being cautious in the event your gadget might get stolen.
  • Watchtower – It is 1Password’s version of a monitoring system for your old, weak, or compromise-prone passwords. In addition, Watchtower has an added feature that alerts you if your credit card information is about to expire, thereby giving you the option to renew it ahead.

Other Details of 1Password:

  • Encryption: 256-bit AES
  • Free Plan: None
  • Subscription: Offers multiple plans starting at $35.88/year
  • Unique Feature: 14-day free trial

Try out 1Password for 14 days for free now!

3. LastPass

Risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee when you try out their features

LastPass offers layers of security, comes with more features than others of the same class do, and offers a pretty affordable plan.

LastPass

Among its wealth of features, the following are quite convenient:

  • Secure Password Sharing – This feature allows a user to share his/her passwords with another user (free plan) or to multiple users (if you subscribe).
  • Security Dashboard – LastPass analyzes your stored password and checks if they are too old, weak, or seem to be a duplicate of your other passwords. It also scans the dark web for possible leaked accounts.
  • Multiple Account Recovery Options – In most cases, an account is rendered dissolved when you lose your master password. However, LastPass allows you to recover the same account in some other way.
  • Automatic Password Changer – This is another convenient feature of LastPass. You no longer have to bother yourself with changing your passwords every time it expires. As long as the site is supported, LastPass can take care of this task for you.
  • Country Restriction – If you’re a globetrotter and you often find yourself waking up in a country far away, you can restrict your access to your password vault while in that country as a precaution in the event of theft or some other cause.

Other Details of LastPass:

  • Encryption: 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES)
  • Free Plan: Unlimited passwords, unlimited devices
  • Subscription: Starting at $36.00/year
  • Unique Feature: Money-back guarantee, 30-day free trial

Try LastPass today for free for 30 days!

4. Keeper

Starting at $31.49 per year, Keeper is probably one of the most bang-for-the-buck password managers in the market today

Its affordable plans are just one of its attractive features. Keeper’s ease of use, security, and functionality are on par with the leading juggernauts in the industry. For starters, they employ the same 256-bit AES encryption that most, if not all, password managers use nowadays. On top of that, they also employ multifactor authentication (MFA), thereby allowing you to access your passwords with your Touch and Face IDs.

Keeper

They also follow a zero-knowledge policy when it comes to retaining user information.

  • Security Audit – This feature is Keeper’s version of a monitoring system that checks the strength of your password and whether it’s a duplicate of your other passwords.
  • BreachWatch – It is Keeper’s dark web monitoring feature. This is an add-on but you can include it as part of your chosen package. This is a handy feature to keep you alerted in case one of your accounts has been compromised, thereby allowing you to change the password of that account immediately.
  • KeeperChat – This feature is a unique offering of Keeper. This is an instant messaging system that is fully encrypted and follows a zero-knowledge policy (even Keeper’s employees do not have access to the contents of your conversation). Its messaging system offers a self-destruct mode where your messages will expire once a specified time has elapsed. This feature just reminds you of those spy films, right?

Other Details of Keeper:

  • Encryption: 256-bit AES
  • Free Plan: Unlimited passwords, 1 device
  • Subscription: Starts at $31.49
  • Unique Feature: Money-back guarantee, 30-day free trial

5. Dashlane

The best password manager in the market today

We have also tried Dashlane, and it didn’t disappoint. It’s safe to say that it is our favorite password manager right now.

With Dashlane, organizing your password becomes easy. Importing your passwords, generating new ones, saving, and sharing them across multiple devices can be done with just a few clicks.

Dashlane

Dashlane also offers the following features:

  • Virtual Private Network (VPN) – Aside from Dashlane’s unbreakable end-to-end encryption, a VPN is also included as part of their bundle. This feature makes your browsing highly anonymous and secure. The VPN itself runs faster than most standalone ones in the market.
  • Automatic Password Changer – Dashlane supports more than 300 sites and allows users to automatically update their passwords with just a click of a button.
  • Live Dark Web Monitoring – Dashlane actively scans the dark web, identifies your emails that may have been a victim of a leak, and prompts you to do the necessary measures to secure it.
  • Password Health Checker – This feature is Dashlane’s version of an auditing tool to check the strength of your password. It also scans your saved passwords for compromises or if they’re reused.
  • Affordability – We have to include it here because the starting plan of Dashlane is the lowest among those offered by the password managers featured in this article.

Other Details of Dashlane:

  • Encryption: 256-bit AES
  • Free Plan: 1 device, 50 log-ins
  • Subscription: Starts at $23.99/year
  • Unique Features: Money-back guarantee for 30 days (+30-day free trial)

Free for 30 days, get Dashlane now!

6. Thycotic Secret Server

Best password manager for corporate and business accounts

Thycotic deals with Privileged Access Management (PAM); that is, among the names on this list, Thycotic is one of those whose primary target market are corporate entities. Secret Server’s role is to come up with a tool to easily detect, control, change, and audit privileged accounts across any organization.

Thycotic’s award-winning software gives security and IT ops teams fast access to secure and manage all types of privileges, thereby protecting administrator, service, application, and root accounts from outside attacks. Secret Server is highly customizable, compatible with your workflow, and fully scalable as your organization grows.

Thycotic Secret Server

Secret Server also has the following features:

  • Improved Security Posture – Protecting privileged accounts helps businesses tighten their attack surface and build resilience against other causes of disruption.
  • Minimized Complexity and Maintained Productivity – Secret Server is easy to deploy; thus, the burden on your IT teams is lessened.
  • Experienced Enterprise-Class Performance – Thycotic secures privileged accounts of more than 12,500 organizations worldwide, including Fortune 500 enterprises, and is deployed on the largest networks in the world.

Other Details of Secret Server:

  • Encryption: 256-bit AES
  • Free Plan: Secret Server Free (10 users, 250 privileged account passwords)
  • Subscription: Starts at $5000
  • Unique Features: Free trial, 24/7 ticket-based customer support

Try out Secret Server for free today!

7. Zoho Vault

Perfect for small businesses and for those who are just getting started

Do you have a small business and look for a reliable password manager to help you manage your privileged accounts? If so, then Zoho Vault might be perfect for you.

Vault is part of the Zoho business management tool suite along with other tools on offer, including the Zoho Vault password manager. Zoho Vault has user management and password assessment report.

Zoho Vault
  • Password Assessment – This feature is Zoho Vault’s version of a monitoring system. It checks the strength of your saved passwords, or as Zoho would like to call them, “secrets.” If your password returns a low score, Zoho will tell you why through a predefined set of criteria.
  • User Management – It gives you a snapshot of who has access to the vault (where you save your business’s privileged information). Those who do have access to the vault can see the passwords saved on it. If you think a user’s info has been compromised, you can remove his/her access to the vault with just a few clicks of a button.
  • Offers Multiple Plans – We think this feature deserves to be mentioned because a small-business owner might find this handy. While other plans are focused on individual users, Zoho Vault is one of the few that caters to small businesses, and their wide range of plans seem to be perfect to keep your businesses secure while not spending so much on it.

Other Details of Zoho Vault:

  • Encryption: 256-bit AES
  • Free Plan: Available but with limited (but adequate) features; no expiry
  • Subscription: Starts at $43.20
  • Unique Feature: No expiry for the free plan; browser integration; 24/7 customer support

Password Managers FAQs

What are best practices for a secure password?

Best practices for a secure password include using a random combination of letters (uppercase and lowercase), numbers, and special characters. Additionally, the password should be a minimum of 8 characters long and difficult to guess.

Why can’t I reuse the same password?

Reusing the same password across your accounts is very risky. You may rotate between several, easy-to-remember passwords, and you might think this strategy can work for you. However, imagine if someone gains access to that one password you’ve been using, then you can say goodbye to your precious data.

Should I enable 2-Factor Authentication (2FA)?

Yes, you should always enable 2-Factor Authentication wherever possible. 2-Factor Authentication adds a second step when logging into your account by prompting you for a code sent to you in an email, text message, phone call, or authentication app. This code expires quickly so that means that even if your password is compromised you are still protected as hackers will not be able to pass the second step without access to your devices.

Password Managers Summary

If you are one of those people who keeps track of multiple passwords at a time, then a password manager can step in and solve the problem. Having a password manager is perfect for those who are having trouble remembering to change their passwords, aren’t good at creating unique ones, or are simply struggling to recall all the passwords needed in their day-to-day tasks.

Most password managers will not only help you create strong passwords but also let you organize and keep them in one place securely (while having access to them across all your devices). A password manager is not only a convenient but also a reliable tool to keep your online life secure. Moreover, it helps in adding a layer of protection between unscrupulous entities and your valuable information.

References:

Williams, Shannon. “Average Person Has 100 Passwords – Study.” Security Brief New Zealand. October 21, 2020. https://securitybrief.co.nz/story/average-person-has-100-passwords-study.


Last updated on by Joshua Holdeman

Joshua Holdeman
About the author

Joshua Holdeman is a DevOps Engineer, Sr. Software Engineer, and Digital Marketing Consultant. With over 12 years in the industry and backed by hundreds of digital marketing projects and websites developed under his direction, he brings experience and knowledge allowing for the recommendation of high-impact business software, tools, and programs to help non-profit organizations, small businesses, and entrepreneurs to launch or grow their business. Before starting this blog, Josh was the Sr. Software Engineer for a world leader in a marketing and graphic communications franchise system.

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