Dashlane Overview February 2023
Dashlane is one of the popular password managers on the market, and I was curious to find out what makes it tick. It claims to have never had a security breach in over 10 years and promises to keep users’ data safe with industry-standard security architecture. I wanted to put these claims to the test, so I ran Dashlane through a series of rigorous tests to determine if it was truly one of the best password managers out there.
After testing Dashlane’s features, I was impressed by this password manager. It offers top-notch end-to-end encryption and password management features for generating, importing, saving, sharing, and auto-filling logins across different websites. I also like that it has a VPN bundled with the service to provide additional security.
Dashlane is one of the most feature-rich password managers on the market. It is backed by a 30-day premium free trial that grants you access to all its features so you can check it for yourself. I was glad that I didn’t need to add my card information to use the free trial.
Don’t Have Time? Here’s a 1-Minute Summary
- Zero-knowledge security — Dashlane uses its patented security architecture and end-to-end encryption so that no one apart from you know your passwords. Find out more about the security features.
- Password Generator — Dashlane’s password generator was easy to use and helped me generate and keep secure passwords. Check how to create secure passwords.
- Automatic password changer — I liked how Dashlane allowed me to update my passwords for support websites from its dashboard automatically. Jump to learn more.
- Works on mobile and web browsers — I found Dashlane’s mobile apps intuitive but was disappointed that there were no desktop apps for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Learn how to set up the apps.
- Helpful support — I contacted customer support and got my questions answered in a few minutes. Find out about the different support options.
- Free plan and 30-day free trial — Dashlane provides a generous free trial and money-back guarantee so you can try the full service. Take a look at all the available plans.
Multiple-Level of Top-Grade Security
Dashlane adopts industry-standard security measures. Its security architecture is designed to maintain a zero-knowledge principle that ensures that no one else, including Dashlane employees, knows your passwords or personal information. You are protected by different levels of encryption such as AES 256-bit encryption, PBKDF2, and SSL/TLS connections for secure communications.
Dashlane also supports two-factor authentication (2FA) which provides an extra layer of security. It works with authenticator apps like Google Authenticator and offers biometric login with Face ID and Fingerprint. With these advanced security measures, I feel safe knowing that hackers and cybercriminals can’t access my data.
Dashlane provides a secure way to store and manage passwords. It uses AES 256-bit encryption, the industry-standard encryption that’s virtually unbreakable to protect all your passwords and personal information. It also adopts end-to-end encryption to secure the passwords you store in your vaults. This means encryption is done locally at the device level, and your data can only be decrypted using your chosen master password, known only to you.
I felt secure knowing that the data in my vault could only be decrypted using the AES key derived from my master password. This key is computed using Argon2d (or PBKDF2 SHA-2), making it more secure and impossible for hackers to guess. Hackers use special computer hardware and software to guess passwords in a brute force attack (also commonly called dictionary attack). By utilizing Argon2d/PBKDF, Dashlane generates keys resistant to brute force attacks. This way, even hackers with sophisticated computing power cannot run brute force attacks and get access to my data.
Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)
Dashlane provides an additional layer of security with two-factor authentication. Once enabled, you will be prompted to complete a secondary step by entering a one-time password (2FA code) when signing in to your account. Dashlane supports popular TOTP-based authenticator apps like Google Authenticator, Authy, FreeOTP, and WinAuth (for PC). It took only a few seconds to link Dashlane with Google Authenticator.
Additionally, I was glad that Dashlane supports FIDO and WebAuthn hardware keys like Yubikey. However, Dashlane has discontinued support for U2F security keys due to security reasons. I was also able to conveniently log in to my vault using Face ID and Fingerprint (on my iPhone and Android). This way, I didn’t have to enter my master password manually.
With HTTPS, Dashlane ensures secure transmission of my data by masking the communication between my device and its servers. HTTPS encrypts the data requests and traffic between my device and Dashlane’s servers, protecting my data exchange from the hands of hackers. Dashlane also uses OpenSSL to implement cryptographic standards for internet traffic encryption using SSL and TLS. This makes the communication between my device and Dashlane’s servers secure.
Dashlane’s business plan has some interesting additional security features. It supports Single Sign On (SSO) for Business users, using any SAML 2.0 IDP. SSO provides the convenience of sign-in that allows users to log in to their accounts without entering their master password. Dashlane also supports account recovery for its Business users, whereby admins can approve the reset of your master password on an authorized device.
Privacy — Zero-Knowledge Data Management
Dashlane’s patented zero-knowledge policy makes your data unknown even to its employees. It ensures that your master password and personal information in your vault aren’t known by anyone apart from you. I also like that Dashlane has security certifications that proves that it adopts industry-standard data management principles to ensure privacy.
Dashlane is GDPR/CCPA and SOC 2 Type 2 compliant. GDPR/CCPA provides a framework that mandates companies like Dashlane to protect your data so that it won’t be shared or sold to third parties. It also requires Dashlane to notify you when any personal information about you is collected. SOC 2 certification proves that Dashlane is employing industry-standard data management practices.
Wide Range of Features for Password Management
Dashlane has multiple features that make password management seamless. It allowed me to create, import, keep, auto-fill, and share my passwords. I also like that it has a dark web monitoring tool that helped me scan my vault data for compromised accounts. While other premium password managers, such as Roboform and Keeper, also have similar features, Dashlane stands out as it comes bundled with a VPN that provides a deeper level of protection.
Dashlane offers a safe environment for keeping sensitive information. It hosts the data you keep in your vaults on secure servers and encrypts your passwords with military-grade AES 256-bit encryption. I found it very easy to create and store sensitive information in my vault. Dashlane’s vault allows you to securely store passwords, notes, payment information (like credit cards and bank account numbers), ID cards, social security numbers, driver’s licenses, passports, and tax numbers. You can also keep personal information like names, emails, phone numbers, addresses, websites, and company details (company name and job title).
Although Dashlane organizes these different data types into categories, I was disappointed that it doesn’t support creating folders that I would have used to organize my password into custom categories. Unlike Dashlane, 1Password allows you to create multiple vaults, something I would also like to see Dashlane do.
Dashlane helped me to generate secure passwords. It allows you to create random password strings from 4 to 40 characters. These passwords can contain a combination of numbers, letters, and special characters, making them more secure.
You can generate these passwords on the Dashlane mobile app, web browser extension, or website (for free). I like Dashlane’s password generator because it displays the history of generated passwords. With this, you can easily find a record of all the passwords you’ve created. But you’ll have to copy the generated password on the app to your clipboard before it can be saved.
AutoFill and Auto-Save Logins
I found Dashlane’s autofill feature easy to use. Once you install the browser extension, it automatically integrates with login fields and prompts you to log in to sites that you have logins saved with. One other cool thing about Dashlane is that it also has an auto-save feature that allows me to automatically save a new login to Dashlane once I enter it in the login field of any website.
Dashlane’s autofill feature worked seamlessly. I like that it automatically signed me into websites that I have saved logins with. It securely logs me in and prevents rogue websites from using clickjacking tactics to steal my passwords.
Dashlane’s password health feature makes auditing of password security easy. It allowed me to check for weak, reused, and compromised passwords in my vault. It even provides an overall health score to help you know how secure all your passwords are.
Although other password managers like Keeper also have a password health feature, I found Dashlane’s password health monitor pretty easy to use. This is because it prompted me to change compromised passwords and allowed me to generate new secure passwords to replace those weak passwords.
Automatic Password Changer
Dashlane’s automatic password changer is a really cool feature. It allows you to automatically update passwords on some sites with one-click. I used it to update my Netflix password and it took less than 30 seconds to effect the change. Even better, you can update multiple passwords all at once. This feature is supported on over 200 websites, including Netflix and Disney+.
One thing I love about Dashlane’s Password Changer is that it works directly with the supported websites. So, your password doesn’t need to pass through Dashlane servers before it is changed. This makes the process more secure since it is end-to-end.
Dashlane made it easy to share passwords. I only had to navigate to the login, scroll down, and select share. After that, I entered the person’s email address that I wanted to share the password with. The recipient will have to create a Dashlane account to use the password though.
Dashlane allows you to share logins with 5 users on its free plan and unlimited users for the Premium and Families plan. When sharing a password, you can give limited rights or full rights. Limited rights allow the recipient only to use the passwords, while full rights allow them to share, edit, and even revoke access to the passwords.
While you can easily share passwords within seconds, I didn’t like that Dashlane doesn’t allow you to share multiple passwords at a time like 1Password does. You’ll have to manually share each login, which could be time-consuming if you need to share hundreds of passwords.
Dark Web Monitoring
Dashlane keeps an eye on data breaches on the dark web. Hackers usually sell leaked passwords on the dark web, exposing the affected users to security risks. Dashlane monitors the dark web for compromised passwords in your vault and notifies you about such passwords. It doesn’t just notify you of the compromised passwords but also prompts you to change the affected passwords.
I like that Dashlane let me know the compromised website that exposed my data and even the date of the data breach. Better still, the breach records are hosted on Dashlane servers. Hence, Dashlane doesn’t send your data to third parties in the process of scanning for compromised accounts as other password managers do. I tested the dark web scan feature, and it picked 11 passwords of mine that were compromised.
Dashlane’s dark web monitoring tool is constantly being updated. It adds about 1 million records daily and has amassed over 12 billion records in total. This updated list keeps me notified about recent data breaches so that I can take appropriate actions to secure my account.
Dashlane comes bundled with a VPN service. It is one of the only password managers that has a VPN as a feature. A Virtual Private Network (VPN) encrypts your internet traffic and protects you from prying eyes, giving you online privacy. VPNs also allow you to stream content from your home country when traveling. Dashlane’s VPN is powered by Hotspot Shield, a fast and reliable VPN provider.
After upgrading to Dashlane premium, I navigated to the VPN tab on my dashboard to set up Dashlane VPN. It prompted me to create a Hotspot Shield account and generate a password for the account. Next, I had to download the Hotspot Shield application on my computer, sign in to the VPN, and start browsing securely. Using a VPN and the password manager provides you with an extra layer of security, and I like that Dashlane considers your all-round security necessary.
Dashlane’s features make password management simple. I like that the apps are user-friendly, and it allows me to create and manage my passwords on multiple devices securely. Unfortunately, I didn’t like that it no longer supports desktop apps and the Emergency Access feature. Emergency Access would have allowed me to designate someone as an emergency contact. This way, the individual can access the data if I’m unable to.
Ease of Use9.0
Straightforward Setup Process
It was easy to set up and start using Dashlane. During sign-up, I was prompted to install the browser extension on my device to set up my account. Dashlane doesn’t have desktop apps, so I could only use the mobile apps and browser extensions. After setting up my account, I imported my passwords from Chrome and found the experience pretty easy.
Once I signed in, I was greeted with a user-friendly interface. There were quick buttons to add passwords, use the autofill feature, and download the mobile apps. I didn’t have any difficulty navigating through the features and using the password manager.
Setting Up Dashlane Web App
- Visit Dashlane’s website.
- Click on “Get Dashlane” at the website’s menu tab.
- Once you’re redirected to your browser extension store, click on “Get” and the “Add extension” to install the browser extension.
- Sign up with your email address and choose a master password to secure and create your account.
- Enter the security code sent to your email.
- You’ll be automatically logged in to your dashboard’s onboarding page.
- Follow the instructions on the onboarding page to start using Dashlane.
Dashlane is easy to use on PC and mobile. I particularly like the user experience on the Android and iOS apps. The features are neatly arranged and easy to use. I used the autofill feature effortlessly to fill in login fields of apps installed on my phone.
Dashlane only works on mobile devices and web browsers. It used to have desktop apps for Windows and Mac, but it was soon discontinued. Dashlane works with popular browser extensions like Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Opera, Brave, and Safari. The browser extension worked pretty well on my Microsoft Edge browser. It allowed me to manage all my passwords and use them on different sites.
Although Dashlane doesn’t have desktop apps, it has apps for Android and iOS devices. The mobile app is easy to use and has tabs for all Dashlane features like password generator, autofill, password health, dark web monitoring, password changer, and password sharing.
I like that the mobile apps support biometric login using Face ID and Fingerprint for iOS and Android. It allowed me to log in to my vault effortlessly without typing my master password. I also found the autofill feature easy to use on my phone. Dashlane’s app prompted me to activate the autofill feature and helped me navigate to my phone settings to set it up. After activating the feature, it worked perfectly on my iPhone browser and apps, allowing me to autofill my logins.
Dashlane has prompt and helpful customer support. You can get in touch via live chat, email ticket, social media, and knowledge base. Live chat was very responsive and professional during my tests. It is important to note that support is only available from Monday to Friday, 9 am to 6 pm EST. The support agents were very helpful and answered my questions professionally.
To chat with a representative, you’ll have to navigate to Dashlane’s help center, click on the chat icon and select “Get in Touch” to get with a support agent. In one of my chats, the support agent couldn’t answer my question immediately but raised a ticket for me, and I got a response in less than 3 hours.
Email support was also very fast, but it was not as consistently fast as the live chat support. After sending a ticket, I received an auto-response that highlighted my question and contained links to some questions from Dashlane’s knowledge base. I was delighted with the fast response time of less than 5 minutes. However, the response didn’t adequately address my question, and when I followed up with another question, I didn’t get a response until after 20 hours.
I was happy to see that Dashlane support is available in German, French, Spanish, and English, making it easy for customers from different countries to get help in their local language. However, phone support was missing, and there was no community forum. Instead, Dashlane has an official Reddit page where support staff and even the CEO respond to threads directly.
Dashlane also has an in-depth knowledge base in its help center. It features information-rich articles, troubleshooting guides, FAQs, account & security guides, and installation/setup guides on platforms and browsers. One cool thing about Dashlane’s knowledge base is that each feature has its FAQ page. These FAQs answer basic and complex questions about the feature and provide help on how to activate the feature where needed. Overall, I like how well-detailed Dashlane’s knowledge base is.
Dashlane costs a little more than other premium password managers, but it’s worth it. It has different plans like Personal, Families, Business, and Teams. The Personal plan has 3 subscriptions: a free, premium, and family subscription. The free plan allows up to 50 passwords in your vault. You get security alerts, use the password generator, password health, share up to 5 passwords, autofill websites, and sync only on 1 device.
I think the Premium plan is the best value for money. It supports all the free plan features, including unlimited passwords, secure notes, 1GB storage, 5 emails for dark web monitoring, unlimited password sharing, VPN protection, unlimited devices, and automatic password changer. Similarly, the Family plan supports all the premium plan features with 6 user accounts and up to 5 emails for each account for dark web monitoring. The only problem is that it doesn’t provide additional storage for the Family plan whereas Keeper provides extra storage for each user account.
Dashlane also has plans that help organizations to use and manage sensitive information. It has 2 options — Business and Teams plan. Both plans support Dashlane’s premium features, advanced reporting, policy management, security dashboard, directory, SAML provisioning, and more.
Unlike other password managers that are billed annually, I was pleased to see that Dashlane allows you to pay with a monthly subscription. You can make the payments with credit/debit cards (Mastercard, Visa, Discover, American Express) and PayPal.
Free Trial For 30 Days and 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
Dashlane has a 30-day premium free trial that allows you to try the service risk-free. However, this free trial doesn’t support the VPN feature. If you upgrade to the premium plan, you’ll find it backed with a 30-day money-back guarantee. I was surprised that Dashlane offered both a free trial and a money-back guarantee. This is because most password managers provide just one or the other.