McAfee True Key 2024: Basic at Best

McAfee True Key is a user-friendly option when you want to secure your passwords and other crucial data.
3.7
Learn More
On McAfee True Key's website

McAfee True Key
  • Available for popular web browsers
  • Uses strong encryption
  • Doesn’t allow password sharing
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If you have one of the best antivirus programs, why should you bother with a password manager, too? Your antivirus software guards against malware and helps keep your data safe, right? In a world where cybercriminals are hard at work, having an antivirus may not be enough.

Think about how many different login credentials you use today. It’s mind-boggling being expected to keep track of them, and if we’re honest, sometimes we can’t. A password manager secures your login info so that you have one less thing to worry about.

From the makers of the popular antivirus, McAfee True Key is an easy-to-use password manager with a clean interface that won’t take hours to learn. In this password manager review, we dive into the specifics of McAfee True Key to give you the information you need to make a thorough decision.

The True Key Premium edition is no longer being sold as a standalone product. To get Premium, you need to purchase at least a McAfee Essential plan.

In this article
McAfee True Key review at a glance
McAfee True Key features
Our McAfee True Key experience
McAfee True Key privacy policy
McAfee True Key customer service
McAfee True Key compatibility
How much does McAfee True Key cost?
McAfee True Key FAQs
Bottom line: Is McAfee True Key good?

McAfee True Key review at a glance

Price Included with McAfee plans starting at $49.99/first yr
Free version Yes
Browser extensions Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge
Password sharing No
Encryption AES-256
Two-factor authentication Yes
Password generator Yes
Form filler Yes
Digital legacy No
Learn more Get McAfee True Key

Prices as of 06/26/2023.

McAfee True Key pros and cons

Pros
  • Offers a free version
  • Available for popular web browsers
  • Uses strong encryption
Cons
  • Doesn’t allow password sharing
  • Not as many features as other password managers
  • Premium version is only available with certain McAfee plans

McAfee True Key features

McAfee True Key is not what you’d call a feature-rich password manager. It comes with the basics you’d expect, like strong encryption and autofill, so you don’t have to remember so many logins. You also get two-factor authentication (2FA) for that extra security layer. Importing passwords into True Key from other programs is seamless, as there are only a few steps.

True Key also comes with a password generator, so you can create a secure password with the complexity needed to guard your data. Now you don’t have to think of multiple combinations to keep your information secure.

What you won’t get with True Key is the ability to share passwords, as it doesn’t seem to offer that as of this writing. We didn’t see where the software has a digital legacy option either. Many people want that to give their loved ones an easy way to access data in an emergency. We cover these features and the lack of them in greater detail below.

Password sharing

McAfee True Key doesn’t offer password sharing. We admit to being disappointed because this option can be crucial in emergent situations. What if you have an unexpected illness and family members need access to certain accounts? That can be considered more of a digital legacy issue, but True Key doesn’t offer that, either.

Families sometimes want to share passwords for convenience. You may have bank accounts or other online accounts that are shared. If your password manager doesn’t support this function, it could be a deal breaker.

Two-factor authentication

McAfee does offer 2FA to better secure your True Key account. You can also use passwordless authentication, where you avoid entering a password at all. Passwordless authentication is a great option for those who are more concerned with security. Face ID, email confirmation, Touch ID, and other methods can be used to safely access your account without using potentially weak passwords or losing those passwords in a breach. You can add extra methods or devices under your profile, so you can set up multiple ways to sign into your account.

Password generator

True Key includes a password generator to create strong login credentials. That way, you won’t have to go through a list of combinations to find something secure. The password generator will give you a longer password so you can protect all your accounts better. Don’t worry about how you’ll remember all these weird combinations because True Key will do it for you. The best password managers offer this feature to keep your data safe from hackers and are easy to access without any hassle.

Autofill

True Key’s autofill function is easy to set up. On the dashboard, you get a host of options that you can click on to start using the password manager with your accounts. For example, if you want to use Amazon securely, you can set it up with your matching login credentials, and you’re ready to go. You can also use this function with addresses and credit cards, but True Key won’t store your CVV numbers. However, this is to comply with banking policies and credit card companies, since these numbers verify your cards.

eBay login page with an autofilled password.

We tested the autofill feature when signing into eBay. We noted that with eBay, our password automatically filled the box, but we had to click on the sign-in button to get to the website. That wasn’t the case with other sites, like Amazon, where we could click on the site from our True Key launchpad and get taken directly to our home page. We didn’t think this was a big deal, though. The hard part is remembering all our passwords, so clicking a button was easy once autofill entered the rest.

Password strength report

There is no password strength report with True Key, but it will show you if the program considers your password weak or strong. You also won’t get the illustrated view of how many passwords you reused and similar data, but when you log in to an account, you can see whether the software thinks it’s a strong password. This was a little clunky because there’s no true indication of your overall password strength on the dashboard. You have to dig into each password entry to see its password strength.

A True Key password entry with the login title, website URL, username, and password filled out.

Although it would be nice to get a full report, seeing how weak or strong a password is can be very helpful when securing data for online accounts. We did notice one of our passwords was considered weak, so that’s always good to know in case we decide to change it for data safety. We did not find anywhere that will show data breach reports, which was a bit of a bummer.

Digital legacy

We were a little surprised to find that McAfee has a password manager that doesn’t support digital legacy. We think McAfee antivirus is a great program, but we would like to see True Key get a little more enhanced. Digital legacy can be beneficial for your family members in the event of a sudden illness where they need immediate access to your accounts. If that’s the case, you simply won’t get that with this password manager.

Bonus features

Since True Key is a rather basic password manager, you won’t find many bonus features here. One feature we do like is that you don’t always have to go into the dashboard when generating a password for a new website. You can go directly to the site, and the password generator will pop up while you’re setting up the new account. That’s one way to save some time.

Although it may not be specifically a bonus feature, we do think a password manager is a nice extra to get when you buy a McAfee Total Security plan. It’s included with the software, so you save some money instead of having to stick with the free plan.

Our McAfee True Key experience

To be fair, our McAfee True Key experience wasn’t bad at all. The program is easy to use, and the interface is clean. You won’t have problems setting up passwords, credit card information, or secure notes. You can also use the extension with popular browsers like Chrome, Safari, Edge, and Firefox. We tested it on our Macbook using Google Chrome and had no issues.

The password generator couldn’t be easier to use. You can decide how many characters you want in your password and if you want to use letters, numbers, or special characters. Once you have those buttons toggled to your preferences, you simply click the Generate button and a password is created.

McAfee True Key password generator with customization toggles.

Overall, we had no issues navigating this password manager. The free version allows you to set up to 15 passwords. You’ll have to get the Premium subscription for unlimited passwords. We think that 15 is fair and many people won’t use more than that. Capturing passwords is also seamless and fast. On the dashboard, you’ll see how many free logins you’ve used, which can be helpful as you decide which passwords you need to set up and those you could skip if you use the free version.

McAfee True Key subscription status indicating the number of free logins used with a button to Go Premium.

As you browse different websites, you can choose to have account credentials set up as you go along. That means when you click on a new website, like a banking app, you can enter your login information and True Key will save the data. Next time, it’ll log you in automatically.

Importing passwords from other password managers or browsers is also easy to do with True Key. Once you click on the program you want to import from, you’ll get instructions on how to do it. So if you’re using a password manager like LastPass and want to import that data to True Key, you can have that done in a few easy clicks.

Instructions on how to import items from LastPass into True Key.

McAfee True Key privacy policy

We didn’t find an actual privacy policy for True Key, but we do believe the software keeps data secure. When you use this program, you’re the only one who has access to your information. Everything is encrypted, including your wallet data. According to the True Key website, this, combined with 2FA, keeps your data safe. When using any software, you want to know that your private information remains secure. If data is collected and shared, you should be aware of that fact. True Key reportedly never shares users’ private data.

McAfee True Key third-party audits

Unfortunately, McAfee True Key doesn’t use third-party audits for security or data testing. This was another issue we had with this password manager. Third-party audits can be crucial when looking for a password manager because it confirms how well the software works to keep your information safe. Third-party testing also illustrates any vulnerabilities a product has that could result in a data breach. The fact that True Key doesn’t use this is concerning because we can’t verify the security of the product.

Is McAfee True Key safe to use?

Although we weren’t impressed with the lack of third-party audits, we do believe True Key is safe to use. First, it is a McAfee product, which has been a leading name in antivirus software for many years. Second, it uses AES 256 encryption, which is military-grade data security. Third, it has a zero-knowledge policy, which means no one else can access your saved data. All of these reasons combined lead us to believe that True Key is safe to use.

McAfee True Key customer service

True Key has a couple of customer support options. You can also chat with a representative who can answer questions. To do some troubleshooting on your own, you can review articles from the knowledge center or ask questions in the community. In addition, True Key has videos that can show you how to install the product or fix simple installation issues.

We did contact customer service to ask questions about the lack of digital legacy and if the software used third-party audits for security. After waiting a few minutes, the representatives answered our questions promptly. Later, we also inquired about True Key not being available as a standalone product anymore and that was quickly confirmed by customer support.

A conversation with McAfee support regarding True Key's lack of password sharing and digital legacy features.

A conversation with McAfee support regarding True Key's lack of third party audits.

McAfee True Key compatibility

If you use some of the most popular devices and browsers, you won’t have any problems implementing this password manager. True Key can either be used as an app or an extension. We used it with Google Chrome on our Macbook Air M1 and experienced no issues.

The following operating systems and browsers are compatible with True Key:

  • macOS
  • Windows
  • Android
  • iOS
  • Google Chrome
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Safari

How much does McAfee True Key cost?

There are two options for acquiring McAfee True Key. You can opt for the free version or purchase a McAfee antivirus or McAfee+ subscription to get True Key Premium. However, the only difference between the two plans is how many passwords you can store.

Plan Free Premium
Price Free Included with McAfee plans starting at $49.99/first yr
Number of users 1 1
Number of passwords Up to 15 Unlimited
Password vault
Autofill
Password generator
Two-factor authentication
Data breach alerts
Digital legacy
Details View Plan View Plan

Prices as of 06/26/2023.

When it comes to pricing, it can be a little confusing to understand how to obtain True Key if you want a paid subscription. On some webpages, the Premium plan is shown to cost $19.99/yr. On others, you’ll see that True Key Premium comes with the Total Security antivirus plan and that you can no longer get True Key as a standalone product. After reaching out to customer support, we were able to confirm that True Key can only be purchased with a McAfee Total Security subscription.

A conversation with McAfee support regarding True Key no longer being sold as a standalone product.

Even if you get the free version, True Key will give you the basic password manager features. However, other products like 1Password or Dashlane offer competitive pricing with more features. Dashlane also has a free version as well and gives you unlimited password sharing. 1Password offers features like Travel Mode to keep you even safer while on the go.

  • 1Password: Comes with all the features you’d want from a premium password manager with no history of data breaches.

    Get 1Password | Read 1Password Review

  • Dashlane: A good all-around product offering a comprehensive password manager with extra features like Secure Notes and a virtual private network (VPN) with the paid plan.

    Get Dashlane | Read Dashlane Review

McAfee True Key FAQs


+

What is True Key?

True Key is McAfee’s password manager, which you can get free as a standalone product or purchase McAfee Total Security and get it included with the subscription.


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Is True Key reliable?

True Key is reliable as far as saving your passwords and other information. It works well to autofill your passwords and can be relied on to generate complex passwords.


+

Is True Key included with McAfee?

True Key is included with McAfee Total Protection.


+

Can True Key be hacked?

We never say that any software cannot be hacked, but True Key uses AES 256-bit encryption, so it would be very hard to crack this software.

Bottom line: Is McAfee True Key good?

If you want a password manager without some of the frills you’d get from other products like 1Password or Dashlane, McAfee True Key is good software. We had a positive overall experience using True Key password manager and found it easy to enter new passwords and had no issues using the password generator or autofill options.

We will say this is a lackluster password manager at best. You won’t get some of the features we expect, like digital legacy and password sharing. Although, if you don’t need to share your data with anyone in the future and you want a simple password manager, this may be the product for you. If you want more robust software, you can read our list of the best password managers to see which products have more features and customization with proven data security.

3.7
Learn More
On McAfee True Key's website

McAfee True Key
  • Available for popular web browsers
  • Uses strong encryption
  • Doesn’t allow password sharing
Author Details
Patti Croft is a seasoned writer who specializes in all things technology. She holds a B.S. in Computer Science and carries a wealth of hands-on experience thanks to her background as a technical analyst and security specialist.