A tale as old as time: every time you make a new online account, be it for entertainment, work, or social media, you must create a strong password. NordPass will help you do that, and this NordPass review will let you know if it's a password manager app you should use.
At the moment, it seems relatively easy to string together some uppercase and lowercase letters, peppered with a number or two… but soon enough, of course, the password is no longer in your memory.
And then you must go through the struggle of resetting it. You're not even surprised when it happens again the next time.
Thankfully, password managers like NordPass exist to make your life easier. Brought to you by the team that created the popular NordVPN, NordPass will not only create your unique password for you but remember them and allow you to access all your stored passwords in one place, from multiple devices.
It's streamlined for ease of use and also comes with a few great extra features. Here's my NordPass review!
TL;DR The sleek and user-friendly NordPass password manager can be the solution to all your complex passwords-remembering and resetting problems.
Pros and Cons
- Advanced Encryption – Most password managers use AES-256 encryption, which is no doubt one of the strongest encryption systems at present. However, when it comes to security features, NordPass takes it a step further by using xChaCha20 encryption, which many Big Tech companies in Silicon Valley already use!
- Multi-Factor Authentication – You can use multi-factor authentication to add an extra layer of security to NordPass.
- Independently Audited – In February 2020, NordPass was audited by an independent security auditor Cure53, and they passed with flying colors!
- Emergency Recovery Code – With most password managers, if you can't recall your master password, that's it. That's the end. But NordPass gives you a backup option with an emergency recovery code.
- Useful Extra Features – NordPass comes with a data breach scanner, which monitors the web for breaches associated with your email address and passwords and lets you know if any of your data has been compromised. Meanwhile, the password health checker assesses your passwords to identify reused, weak, and old passwords.
- Superior Free Version – Finally, the features that NordPass free users have access to are vastly superior to those offered by the free versions of other password managers. Just have a look at their plans to see why this is one of the best free password managers you'll find.
- No Password Inheritance Option – Password inheritance features allow a few pre-selected trusted contacts to access logins in the event of your absence (read: death). NordPass has no such feature.
- Fewer Advanced Features – There are lots of other password managers on the market, and some of them are undoubtedly better in terms of advanced features. So, it’s an area NordPass can improve.
- Free Version Only Lets You Use on One Device – If you use a NordPass free account, you'll only be able to use it on one device at a time. To use it on multiple desktop and mobile devices, you have to get the Premium version.
NordPass Password Manager Features
NordPass first appeared in 2019, at which point the market was already quite saturated.
Despite this, and despite lacking some advanced features compared to competitors, NordPass has become a favorite amongst customers. Let's see what they have to offer.
Credit Card Details Autofill
One of the most frustrating experiences of the digital era is having to remember debit/credit card details and their accompanying security codes, especially when you're a frequent online shopper.
Many desktop and mobile web browsers offer to save your payment information for you, but it's much more convenient to have all your payment info in one place, right?
So, instead of having to reach for your wallet to find your credit card each time you need to make an online purchase, you can just ask NordPass to fill out your credit card details for you.
To add a payment card, navigate to the “Credit Cards” section of the desktop NordPass app using the left sidebar. You will be given the following form to fill out:
Click “Save,” and you'll be good to go!
Another great and really convenient feature is the NordPass OCR scanner. It lets you scan and save your bank credit card details directly into NordPass with OCR (Optical Character Recognition) technology.
Personal Info Autofill
Are you shopping from a new website? Filling out an online survey? Don't go through the time-consuming process of entering every little personal detail manually.
NordPass saves all your personal info for you, such as your name, address, and email (along with any other information you might want to store), and enters it into websites for you automatically.
Once again, you'll be able to find the “personal info” section on the NordPass desktop app's left sidebar. It will bring you to a form that looks like this:
Once you've entered everything and clicked “Save,” it should appear for you in this way:
You have the option to copy, share or edit any of this information at any time.
Be it an angry letter you'll never send or a guest list for your best friend's surprise birthday party, there are some things we write that we need to keep private.
Instead of using your phone's notes app, which can be accessed by anyone who knows your passcode, you might find NordPass's Secure Notes a better, safer alternative.
You can find the Secure Notes section of the desktop version on the left-hand sidebar, where you will find the option to “Add Secure Note”:
Clicking the button will take you to a nicely organized, inviting note-taking window:
Once you've filled out the secure note to your heart's content, click “Save,” and voila, your new note is now securely and privately stored on NordPass! This feature is available on both NordPass Free and Premium.
Data Breach Scanner
With numerous online accounts, every netizen has had their data compromised at least once or twice. Data breaches are much more common than you may realize.
NordPass comes with a Data Breach Scanning feature to keep you updated about whether any of your data has been compromised.
You can access it by clicking “Tools” at the bottom of the left-hand sidebar on your desktop app. From there, navigate to “Data Breach Scanner”:
Then click on “Scan Now” in the next window.
I was shocked to discover that my primary email, a Gmail account, has been compromised in eighteen data breaches! NordPass also showed breaches on my other saved email accounts:
To see what it's all about, I clicked on “Collection #1,” the first item on the list of breaches on my primary email address. I was given a comprehensive rundown of all of the details associated with the breach:
I know the Internet is filled with horrible people, but this many? It's like NordPass opened up my eyes to a whole new world of terribleness, but this is information I would never have had access to without the app.
You can safely assume I hightailed it to my Gmail account to change my password immediately!
One awe-inspiring security feature offered by NordPass is biometric authentication, in which you can use facial or fingerprint recognition to unlock your NordPass account. You can enable Biometric unlocking from the Settings of your NordPass app:
This feature is available on NordPass for all devices.
Ease of Use
Using NordPass is not only easy but satisfying. All items on the mobile and desktop versions (both of which I've used) are organized neatly.
The interface, which sports a professional-looking gray and white color scheme, is also filled with pleasing little doodles.
Let's start with the sign-up process.
Signing up to NordPass
There are two steps to signing up to NordPass:
Step 1: Create a Nord Account
Before you can use any of Nord's services, such as their VPN or NordPass, you must create an account at my.nordaccount.com. It's as easy as making any other account, but you won't be allowed to proceed if Nord doesn't deem your password secure enough:
Step 2: Create a Master Password
Once you're done creating a Nord account from the Nord login page, you can move on to finalizing your account for NordPass by creating a master password.
I started by logging into my Nord account on the desktop app. The app took me to the NordPass website login page to finish logging in, which was a little annoying, but that was okay.
Next, I was prompted to create a Master Password-think of it as the one password to rule them all.
Once again, your Master Password won't be accepted unless it contains both uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, as well as a special symbol. As you can see, the password I created fulfills this condition:
It's very important that you remember your master password because NordPass won't store it on their servers, so they won't be able to help you recover it if lost.
Thankfully, they do provide one recovery code during the sign-up process, so make sure you write it down in case you forget your master password and can't get into your NordPass encrypted vault. You can also download the recovery key as a pdf file:
Note: The Nord Account password is different from the Master Password, so you actually have two passwords to remember, which might be considered a drawback.
Navigating the Desktop App
As I've already mentioned, I found NordPass to be relatively easy to use. On the desktop version, you'll find all your shortcuts in a convenient sidebar to the left, from where you can navigate to different parts of the app:
NordPass Mobile App
Are you thinking of using NordPass on a mobile device? Well, what the NordPass mobile app lacks in aesthetic value, it makes up for in functionality. You can access any and all of the information you wish to from NordPass on the mobile app.
The NordPass mobile app interface is just as easy to use as the desktop app, and all your data will be synced continuously across your devices.
All features are also equally available in the NordPass mobile apps, including AutoFill, which I found to be very reliable when I used it on my phone's default browser, Google Chrome.
Once you've created and entered your NordPass account, you'll be prompted to download the browser extension.
The NordPass browser extension allows you to use their services directly from your chosen browser. You can find NordPass browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Microsoft Edge, and even Brave!
Now we come to the most critical part: password management, of course!
Adding passwords to NordPass is as easy as cake. Navigate to the “Passwords” section in the sidebar and click on the “Add password” button on the top right, like so:
Next, NordPass will bring you to this window, where you have to insert all the details of the website and passwords you want to store:
One of the features NordPass offers, which I haven't seen in many other password managers, and one that I really love is the option to create folders for all your stuff.
This can be especially handy for those of you with lots of passwords, notes, personal information, etc.
You can access your folders in the left-hand sidebar, way past the Categories:
To create a new folder, click on the icon. I've created a separate folder for online accounts associated with entertainment, such as Spotify and Netflix:
Although this isn't the sort of feature that makes or breaks a password manager, it certainly is a useful one. And if you're anything like me and hate clutter, this can be a significant addition to your experience of using NordPass!
Importing and Exporting Passwords
Once inside your NordPass account, you will be prompted to import login credentials from your browser.
You can pick and choose which passwords you want NordPass to remember and which ones you don't:
Although this can be a pretty convenient feature, it also felt a little reductive given that my browsers (Chrome and Firefox) already had those login details saved.
Still, it's better to be safe, so it's good that my existing passwords are backed up on the NordPass vault as well.
Now, if you're thinking of switching to NordPass from another password manager, you'll be able to import your saved credentials.
You can also export passwords saved on NordPass to other password managers. To do either of these actions, you'll have to navigate to “Settings” from the NordPass desktop app sidebar:
Once there, scroll down to “Import and Export”:
You can choose to export/import passwords either from your browser or to/from other password managers. Since we've already covered importing passwords from browsers above, let's look at the password managers NordPass is compatible with:
All popular password managers, as you can see, are supported for export/import on NordPass!
I decided to try and import my saved passwords from Dashlane, a password manager I used before NordPass. I was faced with the following window:
The only way to transfer passwords from a new password manager to your NordPass password vault is to add them as a CSV file.
Although the process of acquiring a CSV file takes some time, it's a fairly easy process. After you add the CSV file, NordPass will automatically identify all the info in it. You will have the option to choose what you want to import:
Like any password manager worth its salt, NordPass also comes with, of course, its own password generator. You will be able to find the password generator in the “Add Password” window, below the field marked “Password” under “Login Details.”
Additionally, the password generator will come up automatically if you attempt to create an online account using any of the browsers in which you have the NordPass extension installed.
This is what NordPass came up with when I asked for help with setting a new password:
As you can see, NordPass lets you decide whether you want to generate your secure passwords using characters or words. It also enables you to toggle between capital (uppercase) letters, digits, or symbols and even lets you set the desired password length.
Auto Filling Passwords
A password manager isn't worth having unless it can make your life easier by filling out your passwords for you. I tested this feature by attempting to log in to Spotify.
The NordPass logo appeared in the field where I would have to enter my username. Once I started typing in my username, I was prompted by NordPass to select the Spotify account I already had saved on their server.
As I clicked on it, the password was filled out for me, and I was able to log in easily without having to enter the password myself.
One of the most valuable features of NordPass is its password auditing service, which is called the Password Health Checker in the app.
If you use this feature, your saved passwords will be scanned by NordPass to detect weaknesses.
First, you have to navigate to “Tools” from the left-hand sidebar:
You should then see a window that looks like this:
Click on “Password Health.” After that, NordPass will categorize your saved passwords as one of 3 categories: “Weak Passwords, Reused Passwords, and Old Passwords”:
It looks like I have at least 8 saved passwords I should think about changing- 2 of them have been tagged “weak” while the same password has been reused 5 times for different accounts!
Even if you choose not to use their password health checker, NordPass does do an independent appraisal of your saved passwords, which you can access in the “Passwords” section in the left-hand sidebar on the desktop app.
I decided to check out what NordPass thinks of my Instapaper.com password:
We can see here that NordPass considers my Instapaper.com password to have “moderate” strength. I decided to take their suggestion and headed over to change the password by clicking on the button on the top right-hand side.
Once there, I used NordPass's password generator to change my Instapaper password. NordPass monitored my password in real-time to appraise its strength.
Once I had a good enough password, the rating changed from “Moderate” to “Strong”:
NordPass also comes with an in-built data breach scanner to check whether your passwords or credit card details have ever been leaked online.
NordPass allows you to sync all of your passwords across multiple devices and platforms.
On NordPass Premium, you can use the app simultaneously on up to 6 different devices, but NordPass Free can only be used on one app at a time. NordPass is currently available on Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, and Android app.
Security and Privacy
How far can you trust NordPass to keep your data safe? Find out below.
Unlike advanced password managers, NordPass does not secure all your data using 256-bit AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) encryption.
Instead, they use XChaCha20 encryption! It sounds kinda silly, but it's considered to be a far more effective encryption system than AES-256, in that it's faster and preferred by lots of big tech companies, such as Google.
It's also a simpler system than other encryption methods, preventing both human and technical errors. Furthermore, it doesn't require hardware support.
Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
If you want to add an extra layer of security to guard your NordPass data, you can activate multi factor authentication to NordPass using a mobile two factor authentication app such as Authy or Google Authenticator.
In order to set up MFA, you'll have to navigate to “Settings” in your NordPass desktop app. Scroll down till you find the “Security” section:
Toggle “multi-factor authentication (MFA),” and then you will be redirected to your Nord account in your web browser, where you can set up MFA from the following window:
Sharing and Collaboration
NordPass has made it easy to share any of your saved information with trusted contacts.
Whatever you're sharing, you can choose to give the person in question full rights, which will allow them to view and edit the item, or limited rights, which will let them view only the most basic information of the chosen item.
You can share any item by clicking on the three dots and selecting “share” from the drop-down menu:
The sharing window should look something like this:
The sharing window should look something like this:
Free vs Premium Plan
After reading all about this password manager, we wouldn't blame you if you're seriously considering investing in NordPass Premium. Here's a breakdown of all of the different plans they have on offer:
|Features||Free Plan||Premium Plan||Family Premium Plan|
|No. of Users||1||1||5|
|Devices||One device||6 devices||6 devices|
|Secure password storage||Unlimited passwords||Unlimited passwords||Unlimited passwords|
|Data breach scanning||No||Yes||Yes|
|Autosave and Autofill||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Password Health Checking||No||Yes||Yes|
|Secure Notes and Credit Card Details||Yes||Yes||Yes|
How much does NordPass cost? Here's how much you'll pay for each plan:
Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of encryption does NordPass use to protect users' data?
NordPass uses XChaCha20 encryption.
What features does NordPass Premium come with?
With NordPass Free, you'll be able to enjoy all standard password manager features, like unlimited password storage, password syncing, autofill, and autosave. MFA is also available.
With NordPass Premium, you get more useful features such as password sharing and seamless multiple device switching (for up to six devices). You'll also be able to access extra tools such as Data Breach Scanner and Password Health checker.
When you sign up for NordPass, you'll have the option to enable a 7-day trial of the Premium version. Read more about free and premium plans above.
Can I import passwords to NordPass from a different password manager?
Yes, you can! You can find the option to import/export in the desktop or mobile apps settings. Additionally, you can also import your login information and credential saved in your web browsers.
What is Multi-factor authentication or MFA?
Multi-factor authentication (MFA) lets you add a separate layer of security when logging in to your NordPass account.
With MFA, every login has to be authorized using a code generator, authenticating app, a biometric key, or a USB key.
On what platforms can I use NordPass?
NordPass works on Windows, macOS, and Linux and has mobile apps for iOS and Android. It is also available as a browser extension on the most popular browsers, including Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Opera.
NordPass Review: Summary
NordPass's slogan states that they will “simplify your digital life,” and I have to say that this is not an unfounded claim.
I find the user-friendliness and speed of this password manager to be quite impressive, and I have to say the xChaCha20 encryption also caught my eye. Even as a basic password manager, this one passes with flying colors.
All that said, this secure password manager does lack some of the bells and whistles offered by competitors, such as Dashlane's dark web monitoring and free VPN (although NordVPN is a great investment all on its own).
However, its competitive pricing is definitely on NordPass's side. Go get their 7-day Premium trial before you decide on any other password manager. You'll see why every NordPass user is so loyal!
Staying on Free Version
I'm a student and don't have so much money to buy a paid plan yet so I'm sticking to the free plan. I don't have any issue on using it on a single device so I'd rather give this a 5-star rating as this password manager keeps me fully organized and stress-free in keeping my passwords and accounts intact. I love it!
NordPass User Experience
Though the interface is a hard to navigate, this is a great password generator and manager that keeps your files and passwords totally protected and safe. It also has a reasonable customer service and a free plan.
I have used NordPass' free version and I don't recommend it to anyone here. Instead, go for the paid version, once I upgraded I realized how powerful and feature-rich this password manager is.
You get what you pay for!
NordPass comes with a free version that you can use only on a single device with limited features compared to its Premium and Family Premium Plans. Paid plans start at $1.49 a month, giving the confidence that all of your passwords are safely kept in the cloud while keeping your files and identity secure. Paid plans are accessible in up to 6 devices with unlimited password storage. The speed is very impressive yet lacks VPN feature and Dashlane's dark web monitoring.
- xChaCha20 Encryption: https://nordpass.com/features/xchacha20-encryption/
- NordPass Security Audit: https://nordpass.com/blog/nordpass-security-audit-2020/
- NordPass Reviews: https://www.trustpilot.com/review/nordpass.com