Password managers protect you from identity theft and make it easier to manage your online credentials, but all the options can be a little overwhelming. To make it easier to choose the right one for your needs, we’ve compared a variety of password managers and compiled a list of their features. This guide explains what to look for in a password manager and provides a detailed comparison between 1Password and LastPass, two of the most popular options on the market. After reading the guide, you’ll feel confident comparing 1Password vs LastPass and choosing one of them to manage your credentials.
How We Evaluated 1Password vs LastPass
With dozens of password managers on the market, it can be overwhelming to sort through all the features and services. We’ve cut through the noise by evaluating these two companies according to the most valuable features of each tool. Keep in mind that the best choice for your needs depends on how you plan to use your password manager. Some tools are better for home use while others are better for business use.
Common features we looked for
1. Security & Encryption
A password manager is only helpful if it protects your sensitive data from unauthorized access. We compared each password manager based on the type of encryption used, whether it uses two-factor authentication or a different security method and whether the developer used up-to-date security methods. We also tested each password manager to determine how well it does at controlling the strength of master passwords. While some password managers require users to choose master passwords that aren’t easy to guess, others allow users to create weak passwords that do little to protect their data.
2. App Compatibility
The most versatile password managers are compatible with a variety of browsers and operating systems. We researched each password manager to see if it’s compatible with the most popular browsers: Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Safari, and Internet Explorer. We also checked for compatibility with the iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, and Linux operating systems.
3. Usability & Ease of Use
This category focuses on how easy it is to set up and use each password manager. We also checked to see if either password manager supports the use of biometric logins, which make managing your passwords more convenient and secure. Biometric authentication uses fingerprints and other unique characteristics to prevent unauthorized users from accessing your accounts. Although they’re not completely foolproof, biometric credentials aren’t easy for hackers to replicate, so they’re more secure than other authentication methods. Biometric authentication also eliminates the need to type in your master password every time you want to access an account, making it more convenient than other forms of authentication.
4. Password Sharing
We tested each password manager to determine if it allows password sharing, which is especially convenient for family and business users. If you share accounts for streaming video, business training or other functions, you’ll be able to share the passwords with other users.
Price is always an important consideration, especially when you’re paying for a service designed to protect your sensitive data. After researching the price of each tool, we determined whether the price applies to a limited or unlimited number of stored passwords.
1Password vs LastPass Comparison
We spent more than 10 hours comparing 1Password and LastPass to see how they compare on the five most important features. The results are broken down below.
Security & Encryption
1Password offers end-to-end encryption, which prevents unauthorized users from intercepting your data and using it to gain access to your accounts. This password manager also uses 256-bit AES encryption, which makes it impossible for anyone else to decrypt your data, and PBKDF2 key strengthening, a form of security that makes it difficult for someone else to guess your master password. To use two-factor authentication, all you have to do is set it up in 1Password and save a QR code to your account. When you log in to a website requiring two-factor authentication, you’ll be given a one-time code to validate your credentials.
LastPass also uses 256-bit AES encryption, which prevents anyone but you from seeing your data — including LastPass employees. This password manager also uses a security feature known as a one-way salted hash. In tech lingo, the hash is a representation of your master password. LastPass “salts” the master password by adding extra data to it, making it more difficult to guess. Because it’s a one-way function, there’s no way for hackers to reverse the salting and remove the extra data from your master password. Finally, LastPass uses PBKDF2-SHA256 rounds, making it even more difficult for an unauthorized user to guess your master password or access your data.
When it comes to 1Password vs LastPass app compatibility, both tools work on a variety of browsers and operating systems. 1Password is compatible with the Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari, Edge, and Internet Explorer browsers. It also works with Chrome OS, Windows PC, Linux, Android, and macOS. What gives 1Password a slight edge over LastPass is that it also works with Windows RT, Ubuntu, and the Dolphin browser. If you plan to use a password manager for business purposes, 1Password would give you the flexibility you need to make passwords more secure for programmers, developers, and any other employee who doesn’t use one of the more common browsers or operating systems.
LastPass also works with several popular browsers, including Chrome, Opera Edge, Firefox, Safari, and Internet Explorer. It’s compatible with Android and iOS, making it easy to manage your passwords on a mobile device. If you prefer to use a laptop or desktop computer, LastPass also works with Chrome OS, Windows PC, Linux, and macOS. Compatibility across several operating systems makes LastPass ideal for business use, as you can create accounts for employees who spend most of their time in the office as well as employees who travel frequently and need a password manager for their mobile devices or home offices.
|Linux||Yes||Yes (command line)|
|Other||Dolphin browser for Android|
*Only with 1Password 4 for Windows
Usability & Ease of Use
1Password is simple to set up, even with multiple users. Once you create an account, you can invite family members to share it with you. After choosing a master password, you can download the 1Password apps for your devices and immediately start using the 1Password extension to save the password for every site you visit. The business plan works much the same way, but it gives you the option of creating custom groups and using analytics to determine how your business is using the password manager. If you use 1Password on Windows, you can even use Windows Hello to unlock the app using just your fingerprint.
With LastPass, all you have to do to create an account is visit LastPass.com and follow the prompts. Once you set up an account, you’ll immediately have the opportunity to download the LastPass app for multiple devices. LastPass makes it easy to save passwords for Amazon, Facebook, Dropbox, and other popular websites in your secure vault. If you previously used another password manager, you can even import your passwords from the other tool, saving you time and eliminating the hassle of re-typing every password. The premium version of LastPass supports fingerprint authentication for Windows 7 and later, Safari, Chrome, and Opera.
With 1Password, it’s easy to share passwords with family members and employees. All you have to do is move the passwords you want to share to the 1Password shared vault. If you have a family account, you may want to share passwords for video streaming services, banking websites and travel accounts. If you use 1Password for business purposes, use the shared password vault to store the credentials for websites that your employees need to use for communicating, participating in virtual training, or creating reports. If you decide to stop sharing a password, you just need to move it to the trash or keep it in your private vault.
LastPass also makes it easy to share your passwords. If you want to share a password, visit your vault, hover over the name of the website, click the Share button, and enter the recipient’s email address. Once you share a password with someone, any changes made on that website will be synced to both LastPass accounts, ensuring both of you always have the most up-to-date information. You can also revoke shared passwords, making it easy to control who has access to your online accounts. Password sharing is ideal for online storage accounts, family health portals, joint credit card accounts, and shared shopping accounts.
1Password has several pricing tiers, a few of which give you the option of paying monthly or annually. The individual plan costs just $3.99 per month when billed monthly and $2.99 per month when paid once per year. A family plan, which covers up to five users, costs $6.99 per month when billed monthly and $4.99 per month when billed annually. The team account costs $3.99 per user per month. Monthly billing is the only option for a team account. If you use 1Password for business use, you can expect to pay $7.99 per user per month, billed annually. Custom pricing is available for customers who need the enterprise version of 1Password.
LastPass also has several pricing tiers, but monthly billing is not an option. You must pay for a year’s worth of service when you sign up for a paid account. In addition to the free basic account, LastPass offers a premium account, which includes 1G of encrypted file storage, for $3 per month. A family account for up to six users averages out to $4 per month when billed annually. Team accounts also cost $4 per month, and they accommodate anywhere from five to 50 users. Enterprise plans start at $6 per user per month for an unlimited number of users. An upgraded enterprise plan, which includes multi-factor authentication, costs $8 per user per month.
|Individual||Free basic; $3/month premium (billed annually)||$2.99/month (billed annually); $3.99/month (billed monthly)|
|Family||$4 per month, up to 6 users (billed annually)||$7.49 per month (billed annually) or $14.99 per month (billed annually)|
|Teams||$4/user/month (billed annually); 5-50 users||$3.99/user/month (billed monthly)|
|Business||“Enterprise” plan starts at $6/user/month (billed annually)||$7.99/user/month (billed annually)|
|Enterprise||Custom pricing for specific needs, $4/user/month otherwise||Custom pricing|
Overview: 1Password vs LastPass
Both password managers work well, but as with any tool, you have to understand how to maximize their usage. The comparison table below lists the main functions of a password manager and explains how they work for each company.
1Password vs LastPass Comparison Table
|Setting up the vault||LastPass offers local and online vaults. Because it’s hosted on your local machine, the local vault loads quickly. Once you create a master password, all you have to do to set up your vault is visit your favorite websites and save each password.||From the 1Password homepage, click New Vault and type in a name. You can also create an icon and a description for each vault to make it easy to find what you need.|
|Logging into accounts||Browser: If you’re using the browser extension, click the LastPass icon, enter your user name/password and, if enabled, complete the two-factor authentication process. Then click the LastPass icon, locate your desired website and click the Launch icon. LastPass Vault: From within the LastPass vault, locate the desired website and click Launch.||Browser: From the login page of the website, click the 1Password icon and select the fields you want to fill. Mobile: Open an app, click the 1Password Mini icon, right-click a login item (e.g. user name or password) and drag it into any field in the app.|
|Creating new passwords||When signing up for a new website, click the Generate icon to open the LastPass password generator. To create a random password, choose “Generate and Fill.”||Click the 1Password button in the browser toolbar. Select the Generate Password button to create a password that meets your parameters for length or the use of numbers and symbols.|
|Changing passwords||LastPass features an Auto-Change feature that automatically changes your passwords to enhance security. For manual password changes, click the LastPass icon, log in to the target site with your current credentials and change your password. Once you establish a new password, click the LastPass Field icon, hover over the name of the website and click Edit to manually edit your password.||Sign in to the target website, click the 1Password button in your toolbar and enter your current password if prompted to do so. Then click the 1Password button and enter a new password.|
|Sharing logins||Open your LastPass Vault, hover over the item you want to share, click the Share icon, and enter the email address of the recipient.||Open your private vault, locate the item you want to share, click Move/Copy, and move the item to your shared vault.|
|Recovering your account||LastPass employees cannot recover a master password for you, but you can recover your account using a one-time password or SMS recovery.||If you can’t remember your password, 1Password offers three recovery options: recover using a family account, recover using another device, or recover using Face ID or Touch ID.|
|Advanced security features||Multi-factor authentication is available for business accounts. Personal accounts are kept secure with multiple forms of encryption and a private password that is never shown to anyone other than the user.||1Password uses multiple forms of encryption, auto-lock and code feature validation to keep accounts secure.|
When comparing 1Password vs LastPass, it’s clear that both companies offer a good product. 1Password has a slight edge over LastPass because it offers monthly billing options for individual and family accounts, which can make it easier to manage your budget. If you need a password manager for business use, 1Password also has an enterprise plan that supports unlimited users, ensuring the app grows along with your business. If you’re looking for an inexpensive, user-friendly option, LastPass will get the job done. If you’re in the market for a more robust solution, however, 1Password is the better choice for home and business users.