Keeper password manager review
Keeper is a password manager that helps you generate and store credentials for all your accounts. The service is paid-only, which raises the bar of entry along with the expectations you might have. The question remains: how does Keeper meet these expectations, and how does it hold up against the competition?
This is what I’ll try to find out in this Keeper password manager review. I’ll go through its security, strength, features, apps, and customer support to see if it provides enough value to justify the purchase. I’ll also look at some of Keeper’s alternatives for those users who’d like something different.
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|Platforms:||Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS|
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Keeper pros and cons
- Layered encryption
- Supports most browser extensions
- 24/7 customer support
- Supports many 2FA methods
- Has special discount programs
- No free version
- Some features are available for an extra cost
Keeper security review
While unique features and subscription benefits help the service distinguish itself from the competition, its security is the most important. Password managers deal with your most sensitive pieces of data – credentials. For this reason, you just can't afford flaws.
Thankfully, Keeper looks pretty good in terms of security. This password manager is advertised as a zero-knowledge service. It uses encryption to make your data in your vault private from the rest of the world. This is a standard model for many password managers, making sure that your passwords will remain private.
The encryption model chosen by Keeper is worth praise because it's layered. It also is based on client-generated keys. Encryption is done locally on the device using AES 256 combined with PBKDF2 encryption, so only encrypted passwords are sent to Keeper's servers.
The way it's applied in practice is that each separate entry is assigned a unique key. This means that instead of your whole vault being locked under a single key, every single password or file you upload is given a unique key.
Such unique keys are also classified under separate categories, i.e., Folder keys. You can imagine that every password will have its own unique key, with a unique category key, making the reverse engineering of all these layers almost impossible. It would take eons for a hacker to get a single password from your vault.
Third-party security audits
Independent audit reports are something that adds more substance to zero-knowledge promises. In this regard, Keeper stands out from the rest of the competition. It's compliant with ISO 27001 standard that outlines practices for information security management systems. These areas from information security policies to cryptography methods.
To top it off, Keeper also passed Service Organization Control 2 (or SOC 2) audit. It assesses management methods and describes system operations in great detail. To qualify for it, it's required that the evaluation should be carried out over a minimum of six months.
The service is also compliant with the Privacy Shield framework designed by the US Department of Commerce and the European Commission. The framework ensures compliance with data protection requirements for EU and USA consumers.
Keeper even has a vulnerability disclosure program, where you can submit any bugs that you find. This reception works to their advantage and gives them better transparency.
The password manager supports 2FA, allowing you to add an additional layer of protection to your vault. It works with several authentication methods:
- TOTP apps
- Hardware tokens
- Smart wearables
- U2F-based physical keys
Whichever method you choose, Keeper requires to have a backup method. This can prove to be handy if you lose your phone or token and don't want to be locked out of your vault forever. It's also worth mentioning that you should skip SMS confirmation as an option altogether. It's considered to be the least safe variant of 2FA.
If you're a fan of radical measures, you can automatically erase all locally stored passwords. When you toggle self-destruct on after five failed login attempts, your locally stored vault will be wiped.
Although it sounds like a great idea on paper, the feature doesn't seem that useful to me. Even with access to local files, no hacker is getting through the encryption. So, deletion doesn't seem to add much value there. Though, I do appreciate that there is an option for those who want to feel better protected.
Keeper features overview
When you export all your passwords from your browser or other password managers into Keeper, you get an opportunity to get them all evaluated. Their tool runs through all of them and quickly tells you which ones were reused and which aren't complex enough. So, if you're trying to strengthen your weakest links, you should start here.
It's also handy that the tool evaluates your password complexity in percentages. That way, you're getting an adequate evaluation of which of them would be easiest to crack.
There's no need to worry that the tool is collecting your password data. The whole process works offline. It just checks the used symbols in your passwords and their frequency and draws its conclusions from there.
Some features aren't included in the standard package that you buy. If you're willing to pay extra, you can enhance your Keeper experience with additional modules. Though, if you don't really see the point, you can avoid them altogether and pay a lower monthly cost.
As you could probably guess from its name, BreachWatch alerts you when your passwords pop up on the dark web. There, in darknet marketplaces, hackers sell leaked databases. If you’re in the habit of reusing the same passwords, this can compromise your other accounts. If you have a payment card added, it's a jackpot for thieves.
Swift response is the only way that you could minimize the potential damage. BreatchWatch will notify you as soon as it finds your data, then you'll have to change the compromised password immediately. If you act quickly, you can dodge the bullet altogether.
KeeperChat is a separate messaging app that will work on just about any tablet, smartphone, or desktop. All your exchanged messages are locked in a secure vault, which is accessible only after identity confirmation. If your device has the required sensors, you can even authenticate using biometric authentication, i.e., fingerprint reader.
Unlike other chat apps like Facebook Messenger, KeeperChat provides much better control. You can retract the messages you don't want the other party to see without them ever finding out. It's also possible to set self-destruct timers on sensitive messages and attachments.
Even if someone sent something sensitive to you, you could keep them separately from your main camera roll. Photos and videos are saved to your private gallery, which means that you don't have to worry about them popping up if you just want to show someone some photos and give them your phone to hold.
You can add several other users to your chat to form a group like you would on other messaging apps. Finally, the app integrates well with Keeper's Password Manager and Digital Vault.
Another premium feature is Trash Bin. It allows you to recover previously deleted records. So, if you realize that you made a mistake and deleted some credential that you neither remember nor reset its password, this will come in handy.
It does add a layer of reassurance that even when something goes wrong, you can roll back your vault and retrieve important data. Almost no password managers offer such a feature, Keeper is unique in this sense.
To save your time, Keeper has an autofill function. To make use of it, you can install it separately or use it along with the app. Separate installations can be either for a browser or as a system-tray add-on whether you're on macOS or Windows.
When you log in, you can directly search the list and launch websites directly from their system-tray add-on. Clicking fill info will auto-fill the credentials for you, so you'll only have to hit enter to confirm entry to the websites or programs.
If you're not a fan of clicking, you can even set up hotkeys. You can customize which button will immediately launch KeeperFill, which will fill in the username or password, etc. This can shave precious seconds when you're in a rush.
You can designate contacts who will be able to access your vault in case of an emergency. In total, you can designate five contacts and indicate how much time should pass before your vault is accessible.
Keeper states that this feature is intended if you become incapacitated, disabled, or pass away. So, this keeps your digital legacy accessible to someone else. Which is quite a unique spin on this feature.
Keeper plans and pricing
|Student||KeeperFill, Secure File Storage, Emergency Access, 2FA, secure sharing, version history||from $2.44/month|
|Family||5 Private Vaults, 10GB Secure File Storage, Unlimited Password Storage, Web App, Unlimited Devices + Sync, Secure Sharing, Emergency Access, 24/7 Support||from $6.24/month|
|Personal||Unlimited Password Storage, Unlimited Devices & Sync, Secure Sharing, Emergency Access, Web Application, 24/7 Support||from $2.91/month|
|Business||encrypted vault for every user, folders and subfolders, shared team folders, unlimited device access, policy engine and enforcement, security audit, activity reports, team management, 2FA||from $3.75 per user per month|
Keeper offers several pricing plans depending on whether you need an account for many users or just one. Even then, you can choose between the regular personal version and a student discount version.
What is immediately noticeable is that Keeper doesn't have a free version. This is somewhat unusual as most password managers that you'll find are pretty generous in this regard. There is a 30-day free trial but no money-back guarantee. It's a restrained approach to their pricing options, but it's worth pointing out that the service’s price is on par with the rest of the competition on average.
If you want Keeper's password manager just for yourself, the final price tag will depend on two factors. Some users qualify for a student discount. Then, there is a Plus Bundle option that adds more features.
Feature-wise, the Student plan is entirely identical to the standard plans with Plus Bundle. It just applies a 50% discount to the total price on checkout via StudentBeans.
With the regular version, you won't be getting BreachWatch, and Secure File Storage. Plus Bundle adds both of them along with all the features from the standard personal plan. If you want the cheaper option, it costs $34.99 per year. Meanwhile, Plus Bundle bumps it up to a $58.47 yearly price. So, you can look at the difference as $1.96 per month or $23.48 per year.
Though not everyone might need data breach alerts or file storage, so it's great that you can choose to exclude them from your subscription cost.
If you need a plan for more than one user, Family is the obvious choice. It covers five users, which should be plenty for most households.
Depending on whether you need more or fewer features, you can choose between the standard version and the Plus Bundle. The former costs $74.99 per year, while the bunded option goes up to $103.48 per year. If you distribute the price across 12 months, then the price is $8.62/month for Bundle, and $6.24 for standard.
Aside from the bumped-up user's count, the standard Family plan offers the same features as the personal version. As usual, Bundle just adds BreachWatch with Secure File storage.
Keeper's business clients can choose between Business and Enterprise variants. The former seems to be intended for smaller-size organizations, while Enterprise could be suited even for corporate clients.
The business plan includes encrypted vaults, shared team folders, unlimited device access, a policy engine, and enforcements. From the centralized administrator page, you'll be able to set up how the credentials will be managed. It's a much safer option than just keeping them in plain text. The price is $45 per user per month, so you can calculate how many users your organization has, and you'll get the total yearly cost for this product.
The Enterprise option includes all the business plan features and adds SAML 2.0 authentication, advanced 2FA methods, command-line controls, and more. You'll have to contact them directly to get a quote, so it's a very flexible solution. This option seems to be reserved for cases when the organization has more than 100 employees.
I've noticed that they frequently run special promotions after subscribing to Business or Enterprise plans. You can get free Family accounts for your employees, for example.
Platforms and apps
Most likely, you'll be setting up Keeper's app. It's available for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and Linux devices. This covers virtually every device that you might have at home.
Moreover, Keeper can be configured with almost any web browser that you could think of. Naturally, this includes Chrome and Firefox, but there are even versions for Safari, Opera, and even Internet Explorer.
You cannot self-host Keeper, but they do provide handy developer tools. They even have their own GitHub repository SDK for administrators and developers. This can help you to automate, schedule, and performs bulk imports via a command line interface.
Depending on where your passwords are stored currently, there are several ways to add them to the Keeper vault. If you're using a browser to store your password, Keeper's Importer can automatically import them to the vault, provided that they aren't password-protected. You'll just have to head to Settings and click the Import button. After the setup completes, the copies of the password will appear in your vault.
If you're already using a password manager, you'll have to export the database and then import the file to Keeper. How this is done will depend on the particular password manager that you're using. Keeper supports importing from EnPass, LastPass, RoboForm, 1Password, and others. If you can export into .csv file, even if your current password manager doesn't appear on the list, you'll be able to get your credentials onto Keeper.
On desktop, Keeper provides the full experience. You can access your private vault, where you can tweak the settings and upload files to your secure storage.
The app itself is classified into Identity & Payments, Security & Audit, BreachWatch, and Deleted items sections. You can also create new entries with the click of a button, filter them out, search, and edit details. There's also a separate options section where you'll be able to watch your account information and change settings.
There is a separate auto-launch button, which instantly loads the page that's associated with a saved password. That way, you can instantly copy your password and safely log in. Overall, I liked Keeper's approach, and their app feels well-made. It should be pretty easy to navigate for newcomers as well as veterans.
Visually, iOS and Android apps look a bit different from the desktop, but the functionality is quite the same.
The main dashboard is separated into Account menu, Keeper Chat, Identity & Payments, Security Audit, Watch Favorites, and Deleted Items. There are separate tabs for BreatchWatch and Settings. So, you'll be able to do most of the things you could with desktop apps minus exporting/importing.
As is standard for password managers, Keeper has an in-depth knowledge base. There you can find very detailed guides, which are sure to help out many newcomers. It's one of the most impressive knowledge bases that I've seen. The guides are even separated for Personal or Enterprise users. Some segments even have video content.
If you're having trouble with their service, you can always check the server status on the same help page. It should quickly indicate whether the servers are down. Too few services add this feature.
If you'd like to contact a human for assistance, every user gets access to their 24/7 support since it's a paid-only service. This will be a ticket system, but the response times during our tests didn't take too long.
Alternatives to Keeper
If, for some reason, you don't find Keeper that appealing, there are other options. So, whether you prefer an open-source password manager or need more functions, plenty of providers will offer their services. Some, even for free, for a basic version.
Dashlane is one of the best password managers on the market. You could even say that many other services follow the standard that they perfected. It has a pretty basic free version, but a lot of features on the premium one. You can add multiple 2FA confirmations, and it includes a dark web scanner at no extra cost. Plus, you even get a built-in VPN. For the price, it's a superb package.
Read more: Dashlane review
NordPass caters to the same users that would be interested in Keeper. It's quite user-friendly, and its price doesn't bite. Not to mention that they have a free version. However, if you're a paid user, you get quite a lot of useful features. For example, there's Data Breach Scanner that alerts you about your leaked passwords. You can use OCR to recognize documents and credit card information automatically. They're even using next-gen encryption algorithms.
Read more: NordPass review
Although recently LastPass made their free version a bit worse, locking it to certain device types, it still remains one of the most popular password managers. Even in the premium segment, its price is highly competitive, and it adds a lot of useful features. You can set up multi-factor authentication, their import/export practically does all the work for you. The autofill works with other apps, even on mobile devices.
Read more: LastPass review
1Password can be a direct competitor to Keeper. Both don't have a free version and are paid-only service providers. Still, this translates into a robust, and versatile password manager. It also includes a dark web scanner (called Watchtower) and Travel Mode that hides sensitive information on your phone. There is also both a free trial and money-back guarantee options that you won't find there.
Read more: 1Password review
Keeper is one of the best premium password managers on the market. Not only do they follow strict security guidelines for their service, but they also add useful features which will be appreciated by most users.
It can be criticized that some of their features are locked behind the paywall, but the counterargument can be made that not all users need them. The ability to customize the service for your liking is an important trait when choosing a password manager, and Keeper hits the mark.
Keeper is an impressive tool with its layered encryption approach, private messaging apps, and most importantly, even though it’s only a paid-only service, the price doesn’t bite.
Is the Keeper app safe?
Yes, Keeper uses advanced cryptography ciphers and layers to make your vault inaccessible to outsiders. You can be sure that your passwords or files will remain private.
How much does Keeper Password Manager cost?
The basic Keeper's plan costs less than $3 per month. Though, keep in mind that they always charge the yearly amount.
Can I use Keeper for free?
Keeper does offer a 30-days free trial. During this time you can try the service and form your opinion. If you decide to stick with it, subscribing is very easy, and students can get special discounts.
Related password managers guides from CyberNews:
Dashlane Review: proven password manager, in detail
Bitwarden Review: find out what this provider brings to the table
NordPass Review: is this truly the best password manager on the market?