Safari passwords

Avoid writing down your passwords or typing them in a document on your computer. That’s a security risk. Apple’s Safari web browser can safely store passwords and (optionally) credit cards in an encrypted file on your computer that no one can access them without your computer’s login password. And when you need them, Safari automatically types them for you.

On personal Macs and devices, enable iCloud Keychain. This keeps your passwords and credit cards in sync. So whether you visit a site on your Mac, iPhone or iPad, Safari will always know the password. The data is encrypted and transmitted securely so you know you’re safe.

Using AutoFill for passwords & credit cards

Safari’s AutoFill system works with most web sites. (Some sites, such as banks, disable this feature.)

  1. Always use the Safari web browser. Other browsers do not take advantage of AutoFill and cannot sync with iPhone & iPad.
  2. Save passwords when Safari offers. It’s safer than writing them down or trying to remember them all.
  3. When iCloud Keychain is enabled, Safari generates a secure password. This cryptic password is the kind experts recommend but you can type your own. Don’t worry, you won’t have to remember passwords – Safari will enter them for you next time. And you can always look them up in Safari’s password list.
  4. When a site asks for your address or phone number, Safari can automatically enter it for you from your card in the Contacts app.
  5. Security questions are critical. Although they may seem nosy,  this is not a survey! Choose questions and answers you will remember so you aren’t locked out of your account should there be any issues in the future.
  6. Next time you visit the site, Safari will automatically enter your user name and password. If you have more than one, pick it from a list.
  7. Safari can also remember credit card numbers and display a list of cards when you shop online. The cards are stored in an encrypted file on your computer, not on the store’s site. You still need to type the security code from the back of the card. These measures prevent unauthorized use. And of course, you don’t need to save credit cards at all.

Looking up passwords and other information

Need to look up a site’s password? It’s easy. All you need is your computer’s login password – the one you use to get to your desktop. That’s why it’s important to protect your login password.

  1. Click the Safari menu and choose Preferences.
  2. To look up a password click Passwords at the top.
  3. Refine the list by typing a website or acccount name in the search box.
  4. Click Show passwords for selected websites, then type the login password you use to access your desktop.
  5. Select a site or hold the Command key to select multiple items.
  6. To have Safari forget passwords, select the sites and click Remove.
  7. Click AutoFill at the top for forms & credit cards.
  8. Let Safari type your address & phone number in forms. Edit this information in the Contacts app. Be sure to select your card, click the Card menu and Make This My Card.
  9. Check User names and passwords so Safari can enter them for you.
  10. Safari can keep your credit cards safe and let you choose one when you shop online.
  11. Add or remove credit cards. You’ll need your login password to see or make changes to the account numbers.

What about email, servers, wi-fi and other passwords? See instructions for the Keychain Access utility.

Got an iPhone or iPad? Learn how to look up passwords on your device.

Learn more about security & troubleshooting.

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