5 Places to Find Saved Passwords on Your Mac

It’s annoying when you’re on the login page but can’t remember your password or the browser doesn’t autofill your saved passwords for you. If you think you’ve saved your account passwords somewhere on your Mac but don’t remember the exact location, these are all places to check.

1. In iCloud Keychain

iCloud Keychain is Apple’s built-in password manager for iPhone, iPad, and Mac devices. If you use multiple Apple devices, chances are that your account password is saved here.

When you use Safari, it uses iCloud Keychain to show you prompts or autofill saved passwords on the appropriate websites. But if this option doesn’t appear, you can search for those passwords manually. In macOS, you can access your saved iCloud Keychain passwords in Safari or System Preferences.

Find saved passwords in Safari

Follow these steps to see all your saved passwords in Safari for Mac:

  1. Open Safari and press Cmd + Comma key. Alternatively, from the top menu bar you can click Safari > Preferences.
  2. Click Password and authenticate with your Mac or Touch ID password.
  3. Use the search box to find the password you need by entering the site name, username, or email. You can also scroll down your list of saved passwords to find one.
  4. When you find the desired saved account details, hover your mouse pointer over the password dots to display it. From here, you can Control-click to copy the password.

Find saved passwords in System Preferences

To view your saved iCloud Keychain passwords in System Preferences, open System Preferences and click Password. Then authenticate with your Mac password or Touch ID. Just like Safari, use the search box or manually scroll the list to find the desired password. And if you find a password, hover over it to view or copy it with Control-click.


2. In a third-party browser

If you don’t use Safari — or you use it in conjunction with other browsers — you may have some passwords stored in third-party internet browsers. Most of these apps, like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox, have a built-in password manager.

Find passwords in Chrome and Chromium browsers

Chrome is the most popular browser, and you can use it as your favorite or second browser on your Mac. If you signed up for a service or website on Chrome, chances are its password is stored in Google’s Password Manager.

Here’s how to access your saved passwords inside Chrome on Mac:

  1. Open Google Chrome and press Cmd + Comma. Alternatively, click Chrome browser from the menu bar and select Interests. However, another way is to click three dots icon in the top right and select Setting.
  2. Click Autofill.
  3. Click Password.
  4. Use the search box or scroll down and see if you’ve saved your account credentials here. If you find the account, click eye button and enter your Mac’s password to see it. You can also click three-dot button and choose Copy password.

Aside from Chrome, if you use another Chromium-based browser, like Microsoft Edge or Brave on your Mac, the steps to view your saved passwords should be identical, with some visual changes.

Find Passwords in Firefox

If you use Firefox, make sure you check its password manager and see if you find the account details saved here. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Open Firefox on your Mac and click three line icon from the top left.
  2. Click Password.
  3. Now use the search box or scroll through your saved passwords to find the password you need. From here you can reveal the password or even copy it with one click.

3. In the Password Manager app

Do you use a third-party password manager app on your Mac, like 1Password or Dashlane? If it is, open it and find the saved password there.

It’s also possible that you haven’t downloaded a password manager app on your Mac, but you use its browser extension or use it on the web. So make sure to check the right website or extension.

4. In the Notes app

Some people save passwords in a note-taking app of their choice. If you vaguely remember doing so, make sure you open the Apple Notes app or any other note-taking app you use on your Mac, like Simplenote, Evernote, OneNote, etc.

Go through the notes and folders to find the one that says the password.

The people who keep the password inside the note can mention it briefly or indirectly so that the casual viewer of the note or someone with access to their Mac can’t decrypt the password. For example, if the password is Timothy @ August 2021you could have written it as MyDog @ AdoptionMonthYear.

Also, when you are in one of the note taking apps, make sure to check your locked notes. Chances are, you secured the password by adding a key to that note.

5. In your Mac folder

In addition to the places above, you should check different folders, like Documents, Downloads, and Desktop, for screenshots, PDF files, or TXT files that may have your password in them. In addition to your password, if you misplace your two-factor authentication backup code, you can find it instead.

In addition to manually searching inside different folders, you can also press Cmd + Space to open Spotlight. Here, use search terms like TXT, Backup, or Password to see if you find something that matches.

Don’t forget to check your other devices

Now, you know several places on your Mac to find saved passwords. But if you can’t find the password you need on your Mac, try searching on your mobile device. Maybe you signed up for a service inside your web browser that doesn’t sync with your Mac. So the password can be saved locally inside the browser on that device.

If all else fails, reset the password

Chances are, the password you’re looking for should be in one of the locations on your Mac that we mentioned above. However, if you still can’t find it, your only option is to reset the forgotten password and set a new one. Usually there will be a prompt on the login screen allowing you to reset your password. After you do that, remember to save it in a password manager or note it down in a safe place so you can avoid similar situations in the future.

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https://www.makeuseof.com/places-to-find-saved-passwords-on-mac/ 5 Places to Find Saved Passwords on Your Mac

Sarah Ridley

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