Bitwarden and LastPass both have excellent security, though one is certainly better than the other. Starting with the latter, LastPass offers the standard security for password managers.
LastPass has official app releases on almost all platforms. Directly from their website, you can install the LastPass desktop app for Windows, macOS, and Linux, along with browser extensions for Firefox, Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Opera. As for apps, LastPass is available on the Play Store and the App Store. Please note that the Safari Legacy extension will continue to function on Mac OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) or earlier, however, that extension will no longer receive updates due to Apple restrictions. Download the LastPass for Safari app extension. Locate the download, then double-click on.
LastPass is a password manager app that has arguably the most comprehensive free version. A crowd favorite, it’s been around for more than a decade.
The app has extensions for all major web browsers, as well as apps for Windows, iOS, Android, and macOS. LastPass relies on 256-bit encryption and zero-knowledge policy to ensure total privacy.
- Two-factor authentication
- Emergency access
- Super easy to use
- Excellent compatibility
- Security Challenge can test password strength
- Zero-knowledge policy
- The free version can store passwords for sites only
- Emergency access is available only to paying subscribers
Online security starts with a click
Overall, LastPass has an easy setup and is among the safest password managers around. It also has a streamlined user interface. Let’s break down these three areas.
When you get to LastPass’ site, you can choose between the free version and a free trial of the premium version and create an account. To do so, you will need to enter a valid email, create a master password, and reenter it for confirmation. The registration form also has an optional reminder field.
If you go with the trial version, you won’t need to provide your billing information. At the end of the trial you’ll go back to the free version.
After the account registration, LastPass will ask you to get the appropriate browser extension – Safari, Edge, Chrome, Opera, or Firefox. Desktop apps for macOS and Windows are available, as are mobile clients for iOS and Android.
After you get the extension or the app, LastPass will remind you to import the passwords from your browsers or a previous password management app. You will get several options, including CSV files. Direct import from similar apps is also available.
To make things easier for newcomers, LastPass will prompt you to save a password. Go to a site and enter your credentials and LastPass will save them. Experienced users can dismiss the guide and enter passwords manually.
LastPass relies on end-to-end 256-bit encryption. It uses AES 356 CBC encryption to create a key from your account’s master password. The app stores it on your device without sending it to a LastPass server. It also uses advanced PBKDF2 SHA-256 hashes. Through it all, the control of your account remains firmly in your hands.
LastPass also offers two-factor authentication in the free version, though subscribers get access to multi-factor verification. You can also set up the app to validate each new device added to your LastPass ecosystem with an email.
If you opt to include a master password reminder during the setup, you can use it to remind you of the password should you forget it.
Like many password manager apps, LastPass comes with a password vault. Interestingly, those on a family plan can have a separate vault for each user.
Ease of Use
LastPass is simple to use across all supported platforms, and all versions have a streamlined user interface. Even though adding passwords by hand might be complicated with some apps of this type, it is a piece of cake with LastPass.
To add your first password, you should create a folder for storing it. To do that, hit the Add New Folder button, which is located at the bottom-right corner when you open the app. After creating a folder, you should click or tap on the Add Item button, found next to the Add New Folder button.
Select Password from the menu and fill in all the necessary fields. Through the same menu, you can also add secure notes, credit card info, bank account info, and addresses, among many others. When you’ve completed the Add Password form, click on Save and LastPass will store it.
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In the Advanced Settings submenu, you can check the Require Password Reprompt, Autologin, and Disable AutoFill options.
LastPass, as an old favorite, offers a range of handy features. Let’s have a closer look at some of them.
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LastPass has a Password Generator like any modern password management app. The default setting is 12 characters of uppercase and lowercase letters. Every password will have one or more digits but not special symbols.
You can also opt to activate Easy to Read or Easy to Say options, which would, of course, limit the strength of the generated passwords.
If you need extra security, you can open Account Settings and activate LastPass Authenticator. That will allow you to use two-factor authentication, which Android and iOS users get for free. LastPass can also work with Google Authenticator, Twilio Authy, and Duo Mobile. To access the app, you will need the authenticator’s code and your master password.
Short passwords are most likely the weakest. Even long passwords can be problematic if they’re too simple. Knowing this, LastPass can check your current passwords for you.
To have your passwords inspected, just click or tap on the Security Challenge button. After you provide your LastPass account login information, the app will show you how your passwords fare.
You will also get a rating for your master password.
LastPass allows you to share your passwords with others. Like with many similar apps, you can decide how much access and control you want to give to the approved person. They have to have a LastPass account.
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LastPass includes the auto-fill feature in the free package. It allows you to have multiple addresses and add other types of data. On a desktop, you can auto-fill any field through the right-click context menu.