In the ever-expanding digital landscape, Mac users face the challenge of managing an increasing number of passwords across various devices and platforms. From securing personal accounts to protecting sensitive business information, having a reliable password manager for your Mac is essential. These specialized tools generate strong passwords and securely store them, ensuring easy access and enhanced security. This guide presents a carefully curated selection of the best Mac password managers available today.
With nearly perfect marks, 1Password is among the best password managers available. It offers top-end security and all the features the average person could want, all for a reasonable price. Mac users can’t go wrong with 1Password.
Starting price 4.8/5
Platform compatibility 5.0/5
User experience (UX) 5.0/5
Form filling 5.0/5
Two-factor authentication (2FA) 5.0/5
$2.99 per month
Compatible with Android, iOS, Linux, Mac, Web (Brave, Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari), Windows.
A concise and user-friendly design makes navigation a breeze.
All plans come with form filling that auto-fills login, billing, and shipping information, while also bypassing CAPTCHA requirements.
Military-grade AES 256-bit encryption pairs with a master Secret Key to keep data safe.
2FA is available with all plans through authenticator apps, security keys, or Duo.
1GB per person for most plans, or 5GB per user for business plan.
Secure password sharing
Sync between devices
I found 1Password to be the best Mac password manager because it combines industry-leading security with all the features most password manager customers could want. During my research, I didn’t see any evidence of 1Password being hacked and was routinely impressed with how well the application worked on desktop, browser, and mobile.
All plans use powerful AES 256-bit encryption along with a master Secret Key to ensure your data is always safe. The Business Plan provides options for securing your team within minutes as well as 1Password Families to encourage team members to practice online safety at work and home.
1Password also offers one of the best 2FA features of any password manager I’ve tested. I appreciated the many authentication options available, from authentication apps to physical security keys. It also helps you create firewalls to maximize your overall security.
The multi-user plans include reporting capabilities so you can generate custom analytics for even more insights into how your business or household uses 1Password. These reports can then be used to see which company emails may be compromised or where vital information may be at risk of exposure.
I found this level of reporting far superior to most other password managers and just one of the reasons I chose it above Dashlane and NordPass as the best Mac password manager.
Who is 1Password best for?
After thoroughly testing 1Password, I believe it is best for small, mid, and enterprise-level business owners. It would also make a great personal or family password manager.
Recent upgrades to 1Password:
With the release of 1Password for Mac in 2022, admins now have more features such as copying, archiving, or creating password groups. It also enabled dark mode for all users. 1Password for iOS was also released in August 2022. Other recent upgrades include a streamlined entry editing process, performance and security enhancements, new icons, a detailed view of vaults and items, and a sidebar redesign.
1Password is priced similar to Dashlane’s paid plans. The business plans are identical in features offered and cost (1Password is $7.99 per individual per month, while Dashlane’s is $8 per seat per month).
NordPass doesn’t offer a Business Plan, but its Premium Personal Plan and Premium Family Plan are cheaper than 1Passwords at $1.99 per month and $3.69 per month, respectively. The biggest difference between the three top Mac password managers, however, is that both Dashlane and NordPass offer an always-free plan for personal users.
Pros and cons of 1Password
Little evidence of being hacked
Variety of plan levels
Free 14-day trial for all plans
Business plan includes family plan features
Recent upgrades to all OS
Individual plan does not have as many features as Dashlane’s
24/7 support is via email only
Good for small to midsize businesses (SMBs) but seem to prefer to work with enterprise businesses
Dashlane has one of the most unique password manager offerings on the market in that it provides a VPN with its premium plans. At only $4.99 per month, this is a tremendous value given a VPN alone can cost $12.99 per month.
Starting price 5.0/5
Platform compatibility 5.0/5
User experience (UX) 4.8/5
Form filling 4.8/5
Two-factor authentication (2FA) 4.3/5
Compatible with Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, OS, iOS, Android.
Simple and easy to navigate.
Automatically populates login information but occasionally struggles to recognize other fields.
Dashlane has everything I need from a password manager. It combines top-notch security with various premium features, such as live dark web monitoring and a password health checker, that set it apart from the competition. The simplistic interface ensured I never had to hunt for what I wanted.
While the free version is more limited than the premium offerings, it still offers one of the best always-free platforms I’ve encountered. That said, its premium plan is where you get the best value, especially if you use a VPN.
Dashlane’s premium plan includes a VPN, a rare find among password managers. It uses a licensed version of Hotspot Shield, which would cost you $12.99 monthly if you buy it separately. While Dashlane’s version is more limited, it’s still a tremendous value given that its premium plan costs only $4.99 monthly.
All of Dashlane’s plans come with top-end security. I haven’t found evidence of any security breaches, and even if there were one, your data would be protected by its zero-knowledge architecture that encrypts information at the device level rather than in the cloud.
Who is Dashlane best for?
Dashlane’s premium plan is the obvious choice for any VPN user as it offers tremendous bang for your buck. The always-free plan is also valuable if you don’t use a VPN. However, NordPass’s is even better.
Recent upgrades to Dashlane:
Dashlane’s new CSV import process lets you easily import information from other password managers. A bulk delete function lets you quickly remove information you no longer need. The new extension works with passkeys and lets you add your linked websites and subdomains to your logins that share the same Dashlane account.
While Dashlane’s free tier is more limited than its paid plans, it has all the features the average customer would want. That said, NordPass’s free plan has even more features and scope than Dashlane’s. The latter’s premium plans start at $2.75 per month compared to $1.99 per month for NordPass and $2.99 per month for 1Password.
But Dashlane’s greatest value is for VPN users who can get a password manager with a VPN included for only $4.99 per month, the same price as 1Password’s family plan that does not include a VPN.
After testing NordPass, I find it offers the best free password manager for those on a Mac. It is one of the few Mac password managers that raises the bar with premium features like reporting on all plans, single sign-on (SSO), and 3GB of storage — even with its free plan.
Starting price 4.0/5
Platform compatibility 4.3/5
User experience (UX) 5.0/5
Form filling 3.0/5
Two-factor authentication (2FA) 5.0/5
Compatible with Android, iOS, Linux, Mac, Web (Brave, Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari), Windows
Modern and minimalist in a visually-appealing way.
Works flawlessly with usernames and passwords, but struggles with payment information.
XChaCha20 encryption, zero-knowledge architecture, data leak scanning, password health checks, and account recovery.
2FA on all plans through authenticator apps, security keys, or backup codes.
3GB on all plans.
Secure password sharing
Account recovery option
3GB of storage
Despite being more limited than its paid plans, NordPass’s free plan blew me away with its breadth of features. You get unlimited passwords, 2FA, secure password sharing, reporting capabilities, SSO, account recovery, and a whopping 3GB of storage — all for free. That said, you are limited to only one device, but for single users who are trying to save money, NordPass is the clear winner.
If you do need a password manager for multiple devices, the premium plans aren’t going to break the bank either at only $1.99 per month or $3.69 per month, both of which are much lower than 1Password or Dashlane. These paid plans come with a 30-day free trial, so if you’re not sure which is best, you can give each a test run.
Another feature that sets NordPass apart is its use of XChaCha20 encryption, an advanced algorithm considered more “future-proof” than the already unbreachable 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) encryption. In addition, NordPass is based in Panama, which puts it outside the purview of the Five Eyes Intelligence Oversight and Review Council (FIORC). This means it can never be legally required to share its data.
I also appreciated NordPass’s secure sharing and account recovery feature, which lets you access your account with a recovery code if you forget your master password. You’d also be hard-pressed to find a Mac password manager that offers more storage than NordPass’s 3GB.
Who is NordPass best for?
Anyone who wants an always-free Mac password manager should choose NordPass. Its free plan is among the best free password managers available. It offers an impressive 3GB storage, unlimited passwords, account recovery, reporting, and SSO.
Recent upgrades to NordPass:
NordPass’s newest features include a way to turn off autofill when you are on a webpage you don’t want to share your details with. It also lets you add your PIN when inputting card details when not using autofill, and has an easier way to change between NordPass accounts. Now there is also additional guidance on how to create more secure passwords.
NordPass offers the best free plans of any Mac password manager. While its free tier is limited to only one device, it’s the only free plan I’ve found that offers reporting, SSO, and 3GB of storage. Dashlane also offers an always-free plan but doesn’t have the breadth of features or storage NordPass offers.
If you want to use NordPass on multiple devices, you’ll need to upgrade to a premium plan, which starts at only $1.99 per month compared to $2.75 per month for Dashlane and $2.99 per month for 1Password. This makes NordPass not only the best free password manager but also the best cheap one for Mac.
While I chose 1Password as the best Mac password manager, the competition is close. Dashlane and NordPass are both excellent options that may be more suitable for certain people.
These three stood out among Mac password managers for their value, top-notch security, and a friendly user interface (UI). All three offer plans for less than $3 a month, with Dashlane and NordPass even offering always-free plans.
While 1Password is the best overall, it doesn’t offer an always-free plan that may make Dashlane or NordPass more appealing for budget-conscious people.
Dashlane’s free plan is decent, but its true value is the premium plans that come with a VPN. The best free plan is with NordPass, although you’ll have to settle for below-average form filling capabilities.
That said, it’s hard to go wrong with any of these options.
Other password managers we considered but didn’t rank among the best include:
Bitwarden: One of the best free password managers with 2FA keys, Bitwarden offers much value. However, it lacks dark web monitoring, extra storage, and limited auto-fill.
LastPass: LastPass offers great features for the price and an innovative UI, but it has a history of data breaches, and user support can be difficult to access.
Keeper: Top-notch security features make Keeper an excellent choice, but it suffers from awkward auto-fill and limited features.
Roboform: It syncs passwords across multiple platforms with a master password but isn’t compatible with USB security keys.
See how the best password managers compare to other top-tier options:
Consider LastPass if: You want to get additional features and are willing to pay a high price for it.
Starting price: $3 per month
Platform compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux, and mobile platform
Security: Zero-knowledge security model
Access on all devices
Password manager and generator
Dark web monitoring
What You Need to Know About Mac Password Managers
How do password managers work?
Password managers help you generate strong passwords and store them securely either locally on your device or in the cloud. They use strong encryption to prevent your data from falling into the wrong hands.
Does Mac already have a password manager?
Yes, Apple computers come with a password manager called Keychain Access that remembers your login details and automatically fills them in on some browsers. However, Keychain Access is limited to only Apple products, so if you want to sync passwords across other devices, you’ll want another password manager, such as the top Mac password managers on this list.
Do password managers work on all devices?
Many password managers work across multiple platforms and devices, including the ones on this list of best Mac password managers. Some password managers are limited to only a few operating systems and browsers. It’s important to confirm any password manager you choose is compatible with the systems you use most.
What is two-factor authentication?
2FA adds an extra layer of security to your accounts by requiring you to enter a second code when logging in. This code can be sent to your cell phone or email or accessed through authenticator apps or security keys. Some platforms even use biometric verification. If you don’t enter the correct code or biometrics, you won’t be able to log in.
What if I forget my master password?
Each password manager handles forgetting your master password differently. It’s commonly done using backup codes that you store in a secure location. Many, like 1Password, Dashlane, and NordPass, offer account recovery, but others cannot retrieve an account after you forget the master password.
How I Rated the Best Mac Password Managers
All password managers essentially fulfill the same functions of generating and storing passwords, but this does not mean all are created equal. To determine the best one, we looked at what matters most to the average password manager client, including value for price, platform compatibility, and security.
To find the best password managers, I signed up for a plan with each provider so I could evaluate it on the following features:
Plan value: What features do you get for the price?
Platform compatibility: How many operating systems and browsers is it compatible with?
UX: Is the UI intuitive and visually appealing?
Form filling: How effective and reliable is the form-filling feature?
Security: What level of security does it use?
Two-factor authentication (2FA): Is 2FA included with each plan and, if so, what authentication options does it provide?
Kallstrom, The Password Manager, is a Cyber Team Lead for a Department of Defense (DOD) contracting company in Huntsville, Alabama, and has worked as a Computer Network Defense (CND) Cyber Analyst. An author and content creator for a cybersecurity academy, Kallstrom spent nearly 15 years in the Army as a musician before entering cybersecurity.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in music from Thomas Edison State University and a master’s in organizational development and leadership from the University of the Incarnate Word.
Kallstrom has completed several Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) courses, including Security+, Network+, A+ Core 1, and A+ Core 2. He earned a CompTIA Security+ Certification. Additionally, he has completed the Cyber Warrior Academy program with more than 800 hours of hands-on, intensive, and lab-driven technical training in cybersecurity methods and procedures.
Passionate about all things cyber, Kallstrom was a speaker on a panel at the 2022 InfoSec World conference, giving a talk entitled “Hacking into a Cyber Career – True Stories.” Kallstrom also mentors entry-level cybersecurity candidates seeking to break into the field. When he’s not working, he still enjoys playing guitar and fishing (not phishing).