How to migrate browser-stored passwords to a password app

Having heard a lot about transitioning to a password-storing app, a reader wonders about the ease of shifting already-set passwords.

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mac911 lastpass import options

LastPass offers a ton of import options from other formats.

Nelis van Nahuijs wants to jumpstart security but has a question about transitioning:

After reading your article about strong and/or unique passwords, I wonder if you have some advice to make a transition to 1Password? What is going to happen with all the passwords I’ve already in place? I use iCloud passwords a lot; should I stop with that practice, and what happens with these passwords after switching to 1Password?

The good news is that the iCloud Keychain can be accessed in OS X via Keychain Access. The bad news is that it’s not in a format that can be directly imported to 1Password (or LastPass).

1Password can natively import a few text formats, like comma-separated values and LastPass exports. But it doesn’t include any tools for importing from Safari or from Keychain Access. Instead, a 1Password user has created documentation for iCloud Keychain exporting and a script that converts many password-storage formats into one compatible with 1Password.

LastPass can import a few dozen formats (including 1Password), and can directly import passwords from inside browsers with the right plug-in, including Safari.

You can also opt to convert gradually: Whenever you visit a site that you don’t yet have in 1Password or another app, when you submit a login from Safari, the app will prompt you to add the login.

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