Password managers have become indispensable in our time. With the increasing volume and intensity of cyberattacks, it has become vital to apply all measures possible to further protect our data from prying hands. One of these protective measures is password managers, which provide more features than just storing all your passwords in a safe place. Bitwarden and LastPass are two of the most prominent password managers on the market.
In this article, we begin a Bitwarden vs LastPass comparison to inspect the features of each, protection level and pricing, among other categories, to choose the best manager at the end.
What is Bitwarden? How Can It Protect You?
Bitwarden is a free password-managing application that works on desktops and smartphones. The password management service company Bitwarden offers additional password-managing capabilities for browsers, web interfaces, and desktop applications. The password manager began its journey in the market seven years ago when it was a smartphone application and browser extension to Opera and Google Chrome. Two years later, in 2018, the password manager was released as a stand-alone password-managing application.
Since then, Bitwarden has continuously worked on further improvements to make the application available for more browsers and operating systems. The application achieved high password-managing market certifications, such as the GDPR, Privacy Shield, CCPA, and HIPAA. Bitwarden’s features include a strong password protection vault, end-to-end encryption, zero-knowledge encryption, cloud synchronisation, and cloud storage for the US and Europe.
What is LastPass? How Can It Protect You?
The password-managing application LastPass is one of the products of GoTo. LastPass provides several password-managing features, such as operating system applications, browser extensions, and mobile applications. Even though LastPass began in 2008, the software went through numerous stages before reaching its current version. From acquiring other companies to releasing new products and versions and data breaches, the LastPass calendar has been busy.
The numerous features available through LastPass include a free two-factor authentication application, multi-device synchronisation, and LastPass Families for password and credentials sharing between families. Unfortunately, LastPass suffered from several security breaches starting in 2015; the most recent breaches took place in 2022. In 2023, investigators tied a cryptocurrency theft and a data breach with LastPass because all the victims used LastPass as their password manager.
Bitwarden vs LastPass: Which Password Protection Agent Will Keep You Safe?
In the previous glimpse, we familiarised ourselves with each contender with a swift look at their most prominent features. Let’s get to the details and study which password protection agent is the best.
A password Manager’s main function is to save the user’s passwords across all platforms and safeguard this data in its protection vault. We take a deep look at the protection each Bitwarden and LastPass offers.
Bitwarden’s trusted protective agent is its Web Vault. This vault will save and secure all your passwords and login credentials in a secure, tight vault that only you can access. The vault also allows you to share this sensitive information with other devices, whether they’re your devices or belong to others in the same network. When you attempt to send this data to other devices, Bitwarden remains at work by encrypting this data to ensure you don’t fall victim to ransomware.
The password-managing software also suggests strong passwords to ensure your information is secure when making new accounts. Bitwarden alleges that once you secure your data in the vault, not even its own experts can break into your vault. The advanced technology the software uses to seal shut your data includes salted hashing and end-to-end AES-256 encryption.
LastPass gives you the choice between personal and business plans, which are free and in paid versions. Unfortunately, LastPass continuously narrowed down the protective features available for free-plan users in the past years and moved these features to paid plans. Like its contender, LastPass offers to secure your passwords and login information in a secure vault, allowing you to share this information with other devices. The vault secures payment information, personal information, and family information and allows you to share them with your work environment.
Besides its secure vault, LastPass gives you a powerful password manager that helps protect your data, fill in online forms from pre-saved information and share your passwords. Moreover, you get a password generator and a digital wallet to secure your online purchases and save the information of each credit card separately. The last feature we’re going to add is LastPass’s dark web monitor, which immediately alerts you if there’s been a breach in a website that leaked your personal data as a result.
Feature-wise, we believe Bitwarden and LastPass offer great features. So, this first round is a tie!
A password manager can be overwhelming software due to its different features of generating, suggesting, and saving your login credentials. This explains why a simple and clean interface is important to facilitate a user’s access to their desired task.
There are numerous elements that make Bitwarden’s user interface stand out. It offers a clean dashboard; some might argue it looks outdated, but we’re cool with that. You have all the main security reports available a click away, which include exposed passwords, reused passwords, weak passwords, unsecured websites, inactive two-step login, and data breaches. The dashboard also gives you many customisation settings for your password generator.
The white and grey dashboard has all the items you need to go through on the left-side menu, with the right side of the dashboard nearly empty. A couple of attention-grabbing interface issues are: for Bitwarden to autofill your password, you need to access the Manager’s settings first from its browser extension, choose the website you’re attempting to log into, and then go back to the password box on the screen and choose autofill with Bitwarden. The other issue is the software’s pop-up for saving new passwords is located under the URL bar and can be easily missed.
LastPass’s user interface is very concise, with only a security score, alerts regarding weak passwords and dark web alerts. The dashboard is white with light grey and uses red and green to indicate the security status. The password generator gives you password examples that are easy to read and memorise. When you access your password vault, the software displays all the websites with saved passwords in large icons and allows you to arrange them by modification date or alphabetically. Such features make LastPass’s user interface really appealing and welcoming.
Additionally, the autofill feature in LastPass is as simple as can be; you just click the small box that appears beside the password box and choose your saved password. When you access a new website or set a new password for any website, LastPass prompts you to save the new password through a pop-up box on the right side of the screen. This box in white and red is eye-catching and will certainly grab your attention.
It was difficult to choose a winner here because if one software lacks in a certain aspect, it makes up for it in another aspect. We’ll call another tie.
The password-generating feature of password managers is a vital one. A successful password manager is one that is strong and hard to guess and uses upper and lower cases and symbols. Which contender comes out victor here?
One of Bitwarden’s best features is its password generator, which allows you to set a minimum number of characters to generate a strong password and even suggest usernames for you. Moreover, the software allows you to add URLs to the same password. This means you can use the same password to log into more than one website.
Unlike its contender, LastPass helps you generate easy-to-read and memorise passwords, which isn’t always a good idea. While memorising your password is a given, easiness can mean vulnerability. In the event of a data breach, which LastPass has suffered from several times, your passwords can be easily decoded and stolen.
Bitwarden’s password generator suggests more sophisticated and hard-to-read passwords, allowing Bitwarden to win this round.
When it comes to cybersecurity, it’s always a good idea to have all the information, especially regarding security reports about your passwords and login credentials. If the reports are too basic or too detailed, they can drive users away.
Bitwarden’s security reports give you enough detail to complete your basic tasks. The software gives you reports about weak, exposed, and reused passwords. Additionally, it exposes unsecured websites to possible data breaches and prompts you to enable a two-step login for added security.
LastPass’s security reports are only an overall security score, a warning about passwords that are at risk, a dark web monitor and, in the event of weakness, a warning about your master password. This comes very short when compared to its contender.
For its detailed and organised security reports, Bitwarden won this round.
Compatible Operating Systems
A password manager that combines all your devices with their different operating systems is a huge advantage.
Bitwarden is compatible with all main operating systems, such as Windows, Linux and macOS. The manager is also compatible with Android and iOS.
Like its contender, LastPass is compatible with Android and iOS operating systems for smartphones and adds Windows Phone and Tablets as well. When it comes to desktop OS, it is compatible with Windows, macOS and Linux operating systems.
LastPass has a slight advantage here; it wins by a minor difference.
For password managers, as with any cybersecurity software, getting the best value for money is essential. A free version and a free trial of the paid versions are added bonuses.
Bitwarden has three options with different pricing for individuals. The first is the free version, the second is the Premium version for $10 a year, and the third is the Families package, for a total of $40 a year and protects up to six users. The Families version has a 7-day trial option.
For businesses, Bitwarden offers three options as well. The first is the Teams version for $3 per user per month, the second is the Enterprise version for $5 per user per month, and the last one is a customisable plan for mega-corporations, where the software offers you to get a special quote.
LastPass offers three packages for individuals. The first is the Free one, which serves one user; the second is the Premium version for $36 a year and serves one user; and the third is the Families version for $48 a year and serves six users. Both paid versions have a 30-day free trial option. It’s worth noting that in 2017, LastPass doubled its Premium version subscription without compensating for this increase by adding new features. Instead, they removed several features from their free version to their premium one.
LastPass business packages are two. The first is the Teams package for $4 per user per month, with a 14-day free trial. The second package is the Business package for $7 per user per month and has a 14-day free trial.
Bitwarden wins this round for the variety and reasonable pricing of its packages.
Here’s a recap of all categories, with the scores and the winner at the end:
|Compatible Operating Systems||√|
Similarities between Bitwarden and LastPass
So far, we’ve only compared our contenders’ differences, after which Bitwarden came out victorious. Despite these differences, there are many similarities between Bitwarden and LastPass, which we’ll take a quick glance at before finishing off.
Even though each manager generates passwords in a unique manner, they both help you generate strong passwords. Perhaps one is stronger than the other.
One strong feature of both managers is the encrypted data folder, which allows you to store valuable and sensitive information such as your birth certificate.
Both contenders have browser extensions compatible with main web browsers such as Firefox, Chrome, and Opera.
Both password managers allow you to categorise your login credentials into separate folders.
Customer support methods are the same for both password managers. They each have training videos available on their websites with big user databases for the commonly asked questions. Each software requires you to fill and submit a support form if you have any new and unanswered questions.
Now that we’ve finished our comparison of both password managers, we need to stress that both managers have strong capabilities, but one was stronger than the other.