Dashlane Password Manager Review: Our Experience

| By Christelle Africa

An easy to use interface, loaded featureset and competitive price point makes Dashlane a great buy for most use-cases.


At first glance, Dashlane is a software that automatically creates, stores, and fills in passwords for you. You might think that it’s nothing more than a regular password manager — something that passively spits out passwords when you need them. But as you dig deeper, it’s easy to realize that Dashlane is actually a bomb tool for safeguarding your passwords, accounts & other personal information.

Advantages

Easy to use
Loaded with features on paid plans
Available on all platforms

Disadvantages

No cloud password storage on free plan

Depending on the plan you have—and there are three options, by the way: Free, Premium, and Premium Plus—Dashlane can be used to protect your online security and prevent identity theft. What’s more, it allows you to store important documents securely, share passwords, and even browse the internet with a VPN.

So when you hear someone referring to Dashlane as a password manager, they’re not necessarily wrong, but they’re only scratching the surface. If you want to learn more about Dashlane’s features, how it works, and whether it could be useful for you, read on.

Strengths + Weaknesses

Below is a table summarizing Dashlane’s strengths and weaknesses. Clearly, it has a lot more pros than cons, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s going to be an absolute winner for everyone.

Strengths

Weaknesses

  • Intuitive and easy to use for the average user

  • Extensions are available for different browsers

  • Automatically synchronizes between multiple devices

  • Password sharing feature is very handy and works seamlessly

  • Offers emergency lockout protection

  • Comes with a Dark web monitoring service

  • The auto-sign in function is super convenient

  • VPN feature included

  • Free version available

  • Identity theft protection and credit monitoring are available for Premium Plus users

  • 30-day money-back guarantee

  • Customer support is limited to email, Twitter, a forum, and business-hours live chat

  • Premium Plus is only available in the US (as of this writing)

  • The free version can only store up to 50 logins.

In a nutshell, we love the fact that Dashlane goes beyond password management. Now, don’t get us wrong; it performs its basic function really well. However, we’d be lying if we say we don’t appreciate the inclusion of the dark web monitoring service in its set of features. The seamless and intuitive user interface is a massive plus, too.

On the other hand, having either 24/7 live chat support or phone support would have been nice. As it stands, Dashlane’s customer support is decent in terms of availability and accessibility, but it’s not something we’d consider outstanding.

Free vs. Premium


FREEPREMIUM
PricingUSD 0USD 3.33/month (Billed annually)
Stored passwordsUp to 50 accountsUnlimited
Synced devices1 deviceUnlimited
Form and payment autofill
Password generator
Two-factor authenticationStandard 2FAU2F with YubiKey support
Security alerts
Password sharing5 accountsUnlimited
Password changer
Secure notes
Emergency contact access
VPN
Dark web monitoring
Remote account access
Secure files storage
Priority support

Dashlane’s free version lets you store and manage up to 50 account passwords. With it, you’ll be able to make use of Password Changer, generate strong passwords using the built-in generator tool, and store secure notes in your Vault. Dashlane Free is also equipped with the form and payment autofill feature.  

Moreover, Dashlane Free allows password sharing for up to five accounts. It supports two-factor authentication (Standard 2FA) and emergency contact access, but you can only use it on one device.

Dashlane Premium, on the other hand, upgrades the features found in Dashlane Free with a bunch of helpful tools. It lets you store an unlimited number of account passwords and sync your data across an unlimited number of devices. It also supports password sharing for an unlimited number of accounts, as well as upgraded two-factor authentication (U2F with YubiKey support).

The premium version also packs Dark Web Monitoring, VPN for Wi-Fi protection, and remote account access in its features list. You’ll also be able to store your files securely and enjoy priority support if you’re a Premium user.

But wait, what’s Premium Plus?

Users in the United States have the option to upgrade to Dashlane Premium Plus. Premium Plus offers everything that Dashlane Premium has plus extra features to combat identity theft—namely, Credit Monitoring, Identity Restoration Support, and Identity Theft Insurance.

Feature Overview

Curious about the myriad of features that Dashlane offers? Give this section a read to find out how you can potentially benefit from running Dashlane on your devices.

Password storage and autofill

Dashlane’s password storage and autofill function is undoubtedly its main selling point. The premium version can store an unlimited number of passwords, while the free version lets you save up to 50 of them.

Basically, Dashlane promises to take care of your online passwords for you. All of them are stored in your secure Vault, which can then be accessed with one master password. By using Dashlane, you won’t have to:

  • Come up with strong and unique passwords each time you create an account
  • Remember every single one of them
  • Type your username and password when logging into an account

You can enable auto-login for specific websites, as well. This might not sound like much, but once you get used to getting automatically logged into your online accounts, it’s hard to look back.

Going back, the only password you’ll need to remember once you have Dashlane installed is your master password. And even if someone breaks into your systems, they wouldn’t be able to access or steal your data without this key piece of information.

Once you set your master password, you’re the only one who knows it, and it follows that you’re the only one who can access your Vault. Even the folks at Dashlane have no way of getting this info, which, of course, is reassuring.

Form autofill

Dashlane isn’t only useful for automatically filling in usernames and passwords. You can also use it to turn every form into a one-click experience.

When setting up the autofill feature, Dashlane will ask you to provide your personal information, which will then be stored in your Vault. Every time you encounter a form online, Dashlane will automatically supply these details to make form-filling quicker. No one really enjoys repeatedly typing in such basic details, so this feature is a definite crowd-pleaser. 

The autofill feature covers the following details:

  • Your first and last name
  • Date of birth
  • Phone number
  • Addresses
  • Company name
  • Emails
  • Personal websites 

If you have a special character (or two) in your name, you’ll probably appreciate this feature even more. We all know that typing special characters can be such a bother when you’re on a laptop. With Dashlane’s autofill feature, you only have to type your name while setting up the app. The rest? Easy-peasy.

Payment autofill

You can also store your credit and debit cards, Paypal details, and bank account information in your secure Vault. This feature makes online checkout a breeze. After all, having to reach for your wallet to fish out your credit card may be a great shield against impulsive spending, but it’s an annoying extra step nonetheless.

Like form and password autofill, payment autofill will automatically enter your payment and shipping information every time you make a purchase online. You can store multiple addresses and payment methods in your secure Vault, so even if you have multiple shipping addresses, checking out online can be done in just a few clicks.

Built-in password generator

You’ve heard it again and again: using passwords like “123456,” “abcd1234,” or “password” is pretty much security suicide. If this sounds like you, well, we get it. We understand that it’s challenging to come up with and remember dozens of unique passwords. But with Dashlane’s built-in password generator, there are no more excuses, folks!

Dashlane’s password generator makes it easy for you to create and store unique and strong passwords seamlessly. And it’s not just a random character generator. It gives you full control over the number of characters you need and the elements you want your password to contain.

Identity Dashboard and Password Health Monitoring

Dashlane has an Identity Dashboard tab that displays a summary of the quality of passwords you’re using. There’s a Password Health Score and a breakdown of how many of your passwords are deemed safe, weak, compromised, and reused.

From the Password Health tab, you’ll be able to easily see which websites have weak, reused, and compromised passwords. The tab also conveniently contains links to these websites, so visiting them for a much-needed password change is only a click away.

Automatic Password Changer

This feature allows you to either change a single password directly from the Passwords tab or change multiple passwords at once through the Password Changer window.

In the previous section, we talked about how, with a single click, you can easily visit a website that has a weak or reused password through the Password Health tab. With the Password Changer, you wouldn’t even need to leave the desktop Dashlane window to change passwords on your account.

Note that this feature isn’t available for all websites. Some sites will still require you to give them a visit to execute a password change. Nonetheless, the fact that this feature is available for some websites is still helpful. You’ll also be able to easily identify which websites are supported by Password Changer through the Passwords tab.

Password sharing

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you need to give someone access to your accounts? With the password sharing feature, you’ll be able to exchange account credentials with your friends, family, teammates, or colleagues without having to reveal your passwords to them. Plus, when you use password sharing, you have the option to add or revoke access to your accounts at any time. 

Dashlane Windows & Mac Apps

Dashlane is compatible with both Windows and Mac. The desktop app is clean and straightforward, and the interface is something that the average internet user will likely find seamless and intuitive. 

Upon installation, you’ll be asked to choose which passwords you’d like to import. Then, the desktop app will guide you through the process of installing Dashlane in your browser/s of choice. Also, there’s a dedicated Getting Started tab for first-time users that makes familiarizing with the app easy.

Dashlane iOS & Android App

Dashlane is also available for download in the App Store and Google Play. The mobile app, like the desktop version, looks clean and is easy to navigate. You’ll also have the option to set up your biometrics if you’d rather access your Vault using fingerprints instead of your master password. 

Other features

Dark Web monitoring

One of the most useful features in Dashlane’s Premium version is Dark Web Monitoring. Having this feature will help you keep your data off the dark web, where personal and sensitive information is often leaked and put up for sale.

When you use this function, Dashlane will scan the web to detect if any of your personal data had been compromised, leaked, or stolen. It will alert you instantly if your information is found and detail what you need to do to secure your data.

VPN for Wifi Protection

Dashlane also comes with a VPN, which is another helpful feature for anyone looking to upgrade their online security. Surfing with the VPN function turned on will shield your online activity and personal data from being viewed or tracked by potential hackers and even your ISP.

Dashlane’s VPN offers unlimited bandwidth and can be used in an unlimited number of devices. What’s more, you’ll be able to choose your server location from more than 20 countries.

Secure File storage

Your Dashlane Vault isn’t only a safe space for your login and personal information. It’s also a haven for storing sensitive or important files. 

You can use the Secure Notes tab to encrypt attachments and personal data while making sure that they remain accessible to you. Upload and attach your important documents and store them safely within the Dashlane app. What’s more, there are spaces within the app that are dedicated to safely storing your IDs and online receipts.

Remote Access

All the files you’ve uploaded to your secure Vault are accessible across your synced devices. If you upload a file to your Vault using Dashlane’s desktop app, you’ll be able to access that file through the iOS or Android apps, as well, provided that Sync is turned on.

Credit monitoring

Dashlane Premium Plus comes with a credit monitoring tool that will help you stay on top of your credit score and credit history. In the United States, credit score is definitely a key player in many of life’s milestones. It can easily make or break your future, so it’s something that you should protect as much as you can.

To use the credit monitoring feature, you’ll need to sign up with TransUnion which, if you’re unfamiliar, is a credit monitoring agency. You’ll then be given access to a CreditView Dashboard that will enable you to efficiently monitor your credit health. Plus, you’ll automatically receive alerts when events that may impact your credit score occur, such as:

  • When a new inquiry is made
  • When a new account in your name is posted
  • When a new home address or a new employer is indicated
  • When information like late payments or bankruptcy are posted
  • When a fraud alert is placed on your credit report

Identity restoration Support

Identity theft is a serious issue, and online thieves are growing in number year by year. If you suspect that you’ve been the victim of identity theft, this feature will come in handy.

Dashlane’s identity restoration service is easily accessible in the Identity Dashboard and will connect you to experts at TransUnion to help your case. These experts will assess the extent of identity theft and guide you through the process of restoring your identity. 

Identity theft insurance

This sucks, but cases of identity theft can easily incur thousands of dollars in financial damages – especially if your banking and financial accounts have been compromised. 

With Dashlane’s Identity theft insurance, you may claim up to $1 million in insurance for costs and losses incurred because of identity theft. Like the Identity restoration support feature, the details of your identity theft insurance are accessible on your Identity Dashboard.

Ease of use

Any software that has been fitted with different features has the potential to become overwhelming for the day-to-day user. Fortunately, such is not the case here. Dashlane is surprisingly accessible for newbies and experts alike. The entire setup process—from installation to everyday use—is seamless and concise.

First off, Dashlane’s website has a rather welcoming vibe. It allows the user to download the software for free without having to sign up or enter their payment information.

The download and installation process is just one click of a button away from the homepage. Once the software is installed, Dashlane will guide the user through the account creation process.

Upon signing up, you’ll be given a short tour of Dashlane’s services and functionality. Once Dashlane is installed, it goes through all the user’s browsers for saved passwords and automatically imports them.   


Security

Dashlane is one of the most secure password managers. It uses AES-256 encryption for the user’s vault. The software uses a Zero Knowledge-based password system. This means Dashlane, at all times, would have zero knowledge about the user’s master password or any derivatives of it. Rather than using the master password to authenticate the user’s devices, Dashlane creates a unique user device key for all the user’s devices. This key is made by taking software and hardware characteristics of the particular device being used. 

Apart from that, it adds 38 OpenSSL RAND byte function generated characters.  This is an important feature as it separates the authenticating devices function from the decrypting of the vault process. Having different password systems for two essential functions helps protect the data better. 

Dashlane can be used on mobile devices to ease the login process to accounts that have two-step authentication enabled.  With Dashlane, the user can generate, store and display all unique six-digit security codes in the Dashlane software, to complete the login process to the user’s important accounts. 

 This feature is similar to any other 2FA application, with two exceptions that make it better: 

  1. It syncs the six-digit temporary security codes across all devices if the user is on the Premium Plan.
  2. The six-digit temporary codes are shared with a password when shared using a credential using the Sharing feature.

Other devices make use of a stored hash of the user’s master password. As a result, if a hacker attempts and is successful in cracking the user’s master password, they can easily steal the user’s data. However, with the two separate function password systems by Dashlane, a hacker would need the master password and access to one of the user’s trusted devices or email to hack user’s data. This gives Dashlane an edge over the other password managers in the industry.

Support

When it comes to password manager software, top-notch customer service and technical support are crucial. After all, we’re talking about accessing vital accounts and managing important private information. That said, Dashlane offers two support channels, as well as its KnowledgeBase, to its customers.

Support OptionsFeaturesAvailability 
1. Live ChatLanguage Support: English.Monday to Friday9 AM to 6 PM EST
2. EmailMultiple Language Support:  English, French, German

English: 7 days/week. French and German: Monday to Friday9 AM to 6 PM EST
3. KnowledgeBaseContains a wide range of topics ranging from basic details to extensive, in-depth tutorials.
Contains helpful screenshots to guide the user through the tutorials. 
24/7 as it is available on the website as content. 

The Verdict

Dashlane is indeed one of the most promising password managers out there. Stuffed to the brim with useful features that go beyond password safekeeping, it offers just the right blend of usability, versatility, and security for most internet users. This comes at a price, though… around 40 bucks a year, to be exact. 

That said, Dashlane’s Premium plans are definitely on the pricier side of the spectrum. But if you’re confident that you’ll be able to make full use of its features, then shelling out cash might just be worth it. 

Dashlane FAQ 

How to add Dashlane to Chrome?

One of the biggest advantages to Dashlane is that the user is automatically prompted to add the browser extension upon installing the software. But in case you don’t see the extension icon on the browser, you can activate it manually.

For Windows: Open the Dashlane app and go to Extensions.

For macOS: Open the Dashlane app and go to install browser extensions

After reaching this menu, the user can choose their default browser and continue the installation process. If the problem persists, the site has a great troubleshooting resource on how to check your Dashlane extension in Chrome.

What Is Dashlane?

Dashlane is primarily a password manager software, but it’s also fitted with other features that are geared towards enhancing your security online, preventing identity theft, and helping you store and secure important and private documents.

Dashlane is available across various popular platforms such as iOS, Android, Windows, and macOS. The software has freemium pricing plans that include a free tier model and two subscription-based models as. One of the key differences between the free and paid software variants (aside from the number of features they offer) is that users of the former get to access their data that is saved locally on a chosen device. In contrast, the premium version allows users to sync all their data across multiple devices.  

How does Dashlane work?

Dashlane securely keeps your logins, passwords, personal and payment details, notes, and files in a secure vault, which is accessible only to you via a master password. It’s constantly on the lookout for forms and fields that need to be filled out with this information and automatically does that for you to make signing in, filling out forms, and checking out online possible with just a few clicks.

How to export Dashlane Passwords?

To export Dashlane passwords –

1. Open the Dashlane application, go to File and then select Export and select the unsecured archive (readable) in CSV format. 

2. Enter your Master Password and hit OK. 

3. Once done, select where you want the exported file to be saved. After specifying a file name, click Save.

Rick James

CEO, SaaSwards

Writer and founder