The Bitwarden Blog
Back up a secure encrypted vault
Editor's Note - Oct 12, 2022: In the October 2022 release, the encrypted export function has been expanded with details available here: New Backup Option Allows for Flexible Encrypted Vault Exports
Password management is more important than ever, and backups are a key factor in keeping your data safe, secure, and available!
Bitwarden offline backup makes it easy to back up your Bitwarden passwords by exporting into several formats, including CSV, JSON, and encrypted JSON by navigating to Tools → Export Vault.
The new Encrypted Export feature allows users to export Bitwarden Vault data into an encrypted JSON file. This process uses the same secure encryption applied to all data within the Bitwarden Vault.
This Bitwarden backup file contains the same data as the prior JSON export format but uses the Bitwarden encryption to ensure that the data is protected.
Users can perform the import of any encrypted JSON files into the same Vault from which it was exported. Because the Vault encryption key is used to encrypt the data, this key must be present to decrypt it as well. This means that if you rotate your key or delete your account, you will need to perform a new export using the new key and/or account.
Using encrypted JSON as a means of backing up your Bitwarden Vault is a quick, easy, and secure way to save your data. It does however require the same account to import the data.
If you are concerned about losing access to your account for any reason or backing up outside of the Bitwarden ecosystem, we recommend using our regular JSON export coupled with an encryption tool of your choice. One method for this is using the CLI application to perform exports in a secure environment.
At Bitwarden we believe in a transparent data liberation process where users can get access to their data anytime. This is available across all of our clients. With Bitwarden encrypted export, users have a simple, safe way to protect their data locally. With regular export, users can employ any encryption method they choose.
To find out more about encrypted export, please visit our help article here.
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Editor's Note: This article was originally written on January 29th, 2021 and was updated on October 1st, 2022.
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