Lock up your data with SecureSafe


By Pete Davison Comment

SecureSafe is a mobile app that acts as a companion to the Web service of the same name. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store¬†and Google Play. This review is based on the iOS version, tested on an iPhone 4S.

SecureSafe markets itself primarily as a password manager. By logging in to the app (which may be done even offline), users can browse through an alphabetized list of usernames and passwords for various sites. Tapping the “Open” button next to a URL stored in the app automatically launches the device’s browser and copies the relevant password into the clipboard ready for pasting into the appropriate box. Usernames and passwords may also be copied manually if they need to be entered into an app rather than a website.

Creating a new password is a simple matter of tapping the “Add” button and then filling in a short form that includes a title, username, password (including the facility to automatically generate a new random, secure password), relevant URL and comment. This information may be edited or deleted at any time.

The app also includes a “File Safe” facility which securely stores documents and other files in various folders. This facility is not currently fully-implemented into the mobile app at the time of writing, but it does allow users to take photographs and upload them to the SecureSafe servers. Other files may be uploaded via the Web interface on a computer and then viewed using the app. From within the app, the files may then either be sent via email or opened in any compatible external apps that are installed on the device.

SecureSafe features a variety of security facilities to help protect the user’s data, though not many of these may be accessed through the mobile app. For example, the app urges users to print out their “recovery code” as they do not allow a normal “forgotten password” facility. However, there is no apparent means of viewing or printing the recovery code from within the app — the user must log into the Web service to do this. There is also no means of activating two-step notification to an account from the app — though taking advantage of this facility requires upgrading from a free account, which is also impossible from the app. Finally, the Web service offers a “Data Inheritance” facility for passing on important details to selected beneficiaries if something should happen to the user — but again, this facility does not appear to be accessible via the mobile app.

SecureSafe’s mobile app offers relatively barebones functionality, then, and a minimal subset of the full Web service’s features. That said, it does what it does well, and is a straightforward, easy-to-use system of storing data securely. For most users, that will be enough — but those who are already using SecureSafe’s Web services may be disappointed at the fact they cannot access some facilities from their smartphone.

SecureSafe’s iOS incarnation is currently ranked at No. 180 in Top Free Productivity Apps on iPhone, and No. 111 in Top Free iPad Productivity Apps. Google Play reports the Android version has been downloaded between 5,000 and 10,000 times to date. Follow both version’s progress with AppData, our tracking service for mobile and social apps and developers.