Best password manager apps

Review

Celebrate Password Day by staying safer online with a password manager app...
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Best password manager apps

Creating a strong and secure password

As if you needed reminding, it's Password Day. To celebrate, we're looking at how to keep all of your online accounts safe and secure.

Coming up with strong passwords is tough, so a lot of us revert to using simple phrases and words, but unfortunately these are easier to hack. Below are the most common, and therefore easiest to guess, passwords of last year - and if you spot your own in this list, you might want to consider downloading a password managing app.

1. 123456 (Unchanged)

2. password (Unchanged)

3. 12345678 (Up 1)

4. qwerty (Up 1)

5. 12345 (Down 2)

6. 123456789 (Unchanged)

7. football (Up 3)

8. 1234 (Down 1)

9. 1234567 (Up 2)

10. baseball (Down 2)

11. welcome (New)

12. 1234567890 (New)

13. abc123 (Up 1)

14. 111111 (Up 1)

15. 1qaz2wsx (New)

16. dragon (Down 7)

17. master (Up 2)

18. monkey (Down 6)

19. letmein (Down 6)

20. login (New)

21. princess (New)

22. qwertyuiop (New)

23. solo (New)

24. passw0rd (New)

25. starwars (New)

 

The only way to keep all your online accounts secure is to have a different, strong password for each one – for example: ‘h311OfR0mTh3|_o\/\/D0wN’. But even that seeminly random assortment of letters, symbols and numbers ('hello from The Lowdown’ in disguise) isn’t that secure. And you’re never going to remember a properly random password as it’ll have no pattern or meaning to you.

So the only way you’re going to be able to have a different random password for each account is to have a password manager. These handy apps store all your passwords and can even generate super strong ones for you.

Best password managers

LastPass best password manager appLastPass

Android, BlackBerry, iOS, Linux, Mac, Windows, Windows Phone and Windows RT

Free on desktop, USD$12/year for mobile

LastPass is simple, secure and packed with features to keep your sensitive data safe. You can save new login details with a single click as you enter them, create super secure passwords randomly and create profiles for your credit card and shipping details. That means whether you’re shopping or logging into Facebook, it only takes one click.

LastPass itself is secured with a Master Password that’s protected by 256-bit encryption, the highest level of security on the internet, so it should be almost impossible to crack unless you make it really obvious to guess.

You can use LastPass on your desktop or laptop for free, but if you want to use it on your phone you’ll need to pay $12 per year after a 14-day free trial.

Dashlane best password manager appDashlane

Android, iOS, Mac and Windows

Free with a premium upgrade option

Dashlane is well designed and incredibly secure. Like LastPass, it stores your details effortlessly and has secure autofill for when you’re shopping or registering for something new. But it’s all designed to be good-looking and simple. So it uses website’s logos to make it easy for you to find what you’re looking for – just hit the Facebook logo and you’ll be taken to the site and logged in automatically.

It uses the same level of security as all the other apps here to keep your Master Password safe. And you can use Google Authenticator as a second security step.

Dashlane is completely free to use, but you can upgrade to a $29.99 per year subscription if you need it to sync passwords across all your devices and give you a secure backup of your details on the cloud.

Keeper best password manager appKeeper

Android, iOS, Kindle, Linux, Mac, Windows and Windows Phone

Free with a premium upgrade option

Keeper is clean and simple. You just browse the web as normal, and when you get to a site that Keeper has your details for, a small box appears asking for your Master Password and it’ll log you in automatically. And Keeper has a secure Vault to Vault sharing system that lets you share information safely.

Like the other apps, Keeper uses 256-bit encryption and two-factor authentication so only you can access your passwords.

You can use Keeper for free, but if you want to back up your data to the cloud, you’ll need a $9.99 per year subscription.

mSecure best password manager appmSecure

Android, iOS, Mac and Windows

£14.42 for Mac and Windows, £6.99 for Android and iPhone

mSecure makes it really easy to visit the sites you’ve got stored passwords for. And with a library of over 250 icons, you can customise the look of the app by giving each of your logins its own icon. But we really like the password generator as it lets you choose whether your password should include upper and lower case letters, special characters and more.

Again, everything’s secured with the highest level of encryption. But you also get cloud backup and syncing across all devices included in the one-off price, there’s no subscription like other apps.

PasswordBox best password manager appPasswordBox

Android, iOS, Mac and Windows

Free with a 25 password limit

PasswordBox automatically remembers your login details as you browse the web, so you can sign back in with just one tap on your next visit. It’s also got a good password generator that’s easy to use when creating new accounts. And it’s the only password manager that “offers the ability to protect your digital legacy during life and after” – letting you pass on your master password to someone else so they can access your online accounts.

Your account is protected by 256-bit encryption and your Master Password, which can also be backed up with a PIN for a second layer of security.

The best thing about PasswordBox is that it’s free for your first 25 passwords, which is enough for most people. You can get unlimited password storage for $11.99 per year.

Are you already using one of these apps or have we missed your favourite out? Let us know about it in the comments below. And if you want more security tips, check out our article on protecting your privacy in apps.

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