Dashlane Review

Dashlane was launched in 2011.  The company has a solid background in the technology space as one of their co-founders was previously the CEO of Business Objects which was acquired by SAP in 2007.  Dashlane is headquartered in New York and has raised $30 million in funding to help achieve their mission to fix the internet.  They understand the challenge that users face when it comes to passwords.  Most users either use easy to guess passwords or repeat the same password across several sites.

Dashlane review

Pricing and Special Offers

Dashlane offers both a free and premium option for personal use.  They also have team pricing for those who need password protection for a group of users.  For $39.99 a year you receive access to a number of premium features including secure account backup (encrypted cloud backup), the ability to sync all your devices, the ability to securely share passwords and notes, web access to passwords, and priority support.

Dashlane pricing

I recommend you download the Dashlane app and try out their password manager.  At the time of our review Dashlane was offering 30 days of free Premium access for all new users.  I suspect they do this regularly to help promote the premium service.  Their annual account works out to just $3.33 a month which isn’t bad considering you can access your passwords from anywhere with the premium service.

Risk Free Trial Period

Dashlane offers both a free account and a 30 day free trial of their premium plan for new users.  Their 30 day free trial will give you plenty of time to review the premium features of their service.  From there you can decide whether you want to stay on the Dashlane Free tier or move up to their Premium service.  I think you’ll find the extra features are well worth the cost.  If not their free plan is still very helpful in keeping your passwords secure and centrally organized.

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Password Manager

Dashlane’s free password manager will assist you in keeping your passwords secure using 256-bit AES encryption.  You can import existing passwords from your web browser into their secure password vault.  Dashlane will provide you with alerts when any of the websites you save passwords for get hacked.  That can be very helpful since it’s important to know as soon as possible.  Of course you will want to use unique passwords for each site anyway.

The Dashlane password manager can help you automatically log into a wide range of websites.  That includes banks and other sites that require more complex logins.  One of our favorite features is the ability to change your passwords on popular sites automatically using Dashlane.  You can change your password with a single click from any device.  Better yet Dashlane will change your passwords on as many sites as you want without having to actually log in and change them yourself.  This can save you hours and a lot of frustration.

Dashlane automatic password changes

The Dashlane security dashboard will help you identify weak passwords and those you have reused across multiple sites.  For those of us who have hundreds of logins that can be very helpful, especially as you get started.  It will also show you sites that have been breached so you have an idea of which passwords and accounts are at risk.  You can set up security alerts to have messages sent directly to your device anytime a site in your list gets hacked.  That will help you update your password as soon as possible and avoid being compromised.

The ability to generate strong passwords is at the heart of any good password manager.  Dashlane will generate strong passwords with a single click.  From there it will save the new password to your vault and autofill it in the future so you don’t even have to remember it.  The premium plan allows you to encrypt and share passwords.  This is especially helpful for those who work in a team and need to securely share account information.  It definitely beats passing post-it notes or texts around which puts your password at risk.

Finally the Dashlane password manager will let you keep secured notes.  Perhaps you want to keep track of a software key, wifi password, or your girlfriends birthday (so your wife doesn’t find out).  Just kidding on that last one but you can likely think of a number of things you want to remember but don’t want to share with others.

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Autofill Feature

Along with their popular password manager, Dashlane will help you autofill online forms.  There are several advantages to using their autofill feature.  For starters it will save you time and help avoid data entry errors.  If you’re anything like me there’s always a good chance of fat fingering your address or other important information.  The autofill feature will help ensure forms are filled out correctly every time.

Dashlane autofill

The other advantage of using the Dashlane autofill feature is security.  You may not even realize that your data remains unencrypted in your browser cache.  The Dashlane autofill will help protect your data.  I like the autofill feature because it pops up in the form rather than showing in a separate toolbar.  Some others I’ve tried were annoying but Dashlane did a good job of streamlining their autofill.  Along with using autofill on your computer, Dashlane offers free apps for iOS and Android devices.

Digital Wallet

The Dashlane digital wallet will hold a wide range of payment types including credit cards, debit bards, and PayPal.  Regardless of how you wish to pay, their digital wallet will help you securely pay for online purchases.  The main advantage I see to using a digital wallet is that you don’t need to store your billing information for reuse on websites.  The fewer databases you have your credit card numbers in the better.  The Dashlane solution will save your billing info and let you select which source you want to use for each purchase.  It saves digital receipts with itemized screenshots so you can review purchases.

Data Security

Before entrusting a company to secure your passwords and payment information (if you use the digital wallet) it helps to do some homework first.  Dashlane has a page on their site dedicated to the security of their service.  We’ll share some of the highlights but I still suggest you read it over to familiar yourself with their system.

Dashlane security model

Dashlane uses AES-256 encryption which uses 10k rounds of PBKDF2 salt.  They rely on the open-source standard which is trusted worldwide and has yet to be cracked.  You will set a master password which is never recorded by Dashlane.  The key that encrypts your data is based on the same password.  Therefore your encryption key is never recorded.  You can choose whether to keep your data local or sync it with their servers (using AES-256) to share on multiple devices.  Use Google Authenticator to add two-factor authentication.  I suggest adding multiple authentication factors whenever possible.

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Dashlane Software

You will likely start by installing the Dashlane password manager software on Windows or Mac OS X.  They also have mobile apps for iOS and Android.  You can use Touch ID to log into Dashlane using your fingerprint on iPhone and iPad.  You will have access to your digital wallet and passwords on all devices if you choose to sync the info with their servers.  I recommend using Google Authenticator to further secure your account.  The same is true for any site that offers two-factor authentication.  Passwords are weak by nature so having a second factor will help secure your privacy.

Dashlane iOS app

As you can see the Dashlane iOS app has some nice advanced features.  For starters you can use it to securely store and autifill passwords.  It will also serve as your secure digital wallet for online payments.  You can set the app to use your fingerprint to log in to websites and autofill forms.  That’s a nice extra level of security.  You can also securely share passwords and notes with anyone you wish through the app.

Customer Support

Premium members receive priority support.  In order to submit a question, you will want to send an email to their support team.  Premium members can send an email directly to vip (at) dashlane.com for a faster response.  Make sure to contact Dashlane support using the email address associated with your account.

Dashlane Review: Conclusion

Dashlane has developed a very good password manager and secure digital wallet.  I especially like their password changer which changes multiple passwords on the fly.  That can come in handy for those who use similar passwords between sites.  Of course you shouldn’t do that but they know users do anyway and have built a useful tool to help protect your accounts when a site gets hacked.

What I liked most about the service:

  • They do not know or store your master password or encryption key
  • AES-256 encryption to secure your data
  • Custom software for Windows and Mac OS X
  • Mobile apps for iOS and Android
  • Log in and autofill on iOS using your fingerprint
  • Two-factor authentication using Google Authenticator

Ideas to improve the service:

  • Lower the price on premium memberships
  • Add live chat support for premium members

Dashlane will help you generate strong passwords, store them securely, and automatically log into your favorite websites.  It will also help you automatically change passwords across multiple sites anytime.  Their digital wallet will keep your payment options secure and allow you to pay online without vendors saving your payment information.  I suggest downloading their software and signing up for a free account.  Dashlane is offering all new users 30 days of free premium access.  Test their service on all your devices and securely sync between them.

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