I'd like to share passwords between macOS and iOS. I've enabled iCloud keychain, moved all relevant passwords in Keychain App to iCloud but for some reason they don't appear in my iPhone. I check my passwords and there's nothing there. How can I debug this?

  • From where are you checking your passwords on iOS?
    – airsquared
    May 10, 2019 at 22:23
  • @abc "Passwords & Accounts"
    – ruipacheco
    May 13, 2019 at 21:56

2 Answers 2


Only passwords stored via Safari are synced between devices. Passwords manually added to Keychain App are not sent to iOS.

  • Yes seems like we need to add passwords in Mac via Safari > Preferences > Passwords in order for it to appear in iOS. That way it'll appear in Keychain too (not vice versa).
    – cakraww
    Dec 31, 2020 at 13:53

Keychain must be turned on in both iOS and macOS. While data is moved back-and-forth through iCloud, data is not accessible from iCloud and need not (and should not) be moved manually from a computer or device into the user's iCloud storage. You can see Apple's directions for iOS here, and for macOS here. A good long-form discussion of Keychain synching is here. Apple's iOS page notes that Keychain synching is not available in all countries.


  1. Turn on Keychain synching on your iPhone in Settings > iCloud > Keychain. The Keychain slider must be "On." (This is iOS 12.2; your iOS may vary.)

  2. Turn on Keychain synching on your Mac in System Preferences > iCloud > Keychain. The checkbox next to "Keychain" must be checked.

  3. Confirm that both the iPhone and the Mac are signed in to iCloud.

You don't need to manually move files; it all happens seamlessly behind the scenes.

  • so Keychain only applies to Safari usernames and passwords?
    – ruipacheco
    May 13, 2019 at 21:57
  • I think that Safari is the only browser that Keychain works with, but Keychain can also store credit card info. The Wikipedia article on Keychain says: A Keychain can contain various types of data: passwords (for websites, FTP servers, SSH accounts, network shares, wireless networks, groupware applications, encrypted disk images), private keys, certificates, and secure notes. May 14, 2019 at 4:13
  • I'm adding passwords manually because I use Firefox. It's those passwords I can't sync between iOs and macOS.
    – ruipacheco
    May 14, 2019 at 7:53
  • You can visit Apple's walled garden with non-Apple visitors, but they're not allowed to use all Apple's tools. May 14, 2019 at 13:40
  • I thought that since passwords are kept in Keychain, passwords added to Keychain would automagically sync to iOS. I guess Dashlane it is then.
    – ruipacheco
    May 14, 2019 at 14:00

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