Bitwarden is that rare example of my credo that if you aren’t paying for a product, you are the product. Password managers are another spoke in the wheel of security measures that are increasingly becoming essential. I started with Lastpass but found that too flaky and Dashlane was a bit too aggressive. I found my solution in 1Password and have been a premium subscriber for many years and that is not about to change.
However, somewhere online I fell across a review of Bitwarden which was stated to be not only probably the best password manager available but the best free password manager.
It achieves this by being open source so the background workings are open to scrutiny. There are paid-for options available, but for an individual seeking to secure access to online sites, Bitwarden makes perfect sense if you can do without the paid-for extras such as reports, seeking out weak and duplicate passwords, etc.
Set up is extremely simple and Bitwarden allows you to import passwords from your existing manager. A test import from 1Password was straightforward. As you would expect, there are desktop, Android and IoS versions available and there is no limitation on how many devices the software can be installed on. The browser extension resembles the web app and includes a password generator, making using the password manager on the fly even easier.
As far as security is concerned, Bitwarden has been audited by Cure53, a German security company; enough said!
The Bitwarden vault is secured with AES-256, and your master password is never sent to Bitwarden. It is used to generate a key that’s further hashed with SHA-256. If you’re extra paranoid, you can host all your passwords on your own server.