How to Look up Your Saved WiFi Password Using Keychain Access on Mac

Looking for your WiFi password? Often enough, you can find your WiFi network's password when you're using a home router, which means that the password to be modified via a software interface. In the case of some routers from certain Internet providers, you can actually find the default password written on the side of the router itself. On the other hand, if you're talking about your workplace's WiFi you should probably just ask the tech guys for help.

Some situations fall outside of the scope of those otherwise simple solutions. However, there are solutions to those problems and all you need to do is use the right tool. One particularly simple way to discover a saved WiFi password is to look inside the Keychain app. Why? Because it's used to store WiFi passwords along with other potentially sensitive information. The purpose of this guide is to explain how to find a WiFi password within the Keychain app as quickly and as easy as possible.

How to find a password with your WiFi's network name

In order to manually find a password you need to look inside the Keychain first, and for that, you will need the KeyChain Access app, which can be found inside the Utilities folder located in the Applications folder. Alternatively, the Keychain Access application can be located with the help of the search bar in Finder. Just enter "Keychain Access" and broaden the search to "This Mac".

If you already know the name of the WiFi network you need to find a password for then choose "Passwords" under "Category" and select the search box. Enter the name of the network in the network name field until it pops up on the main list. Press the result you want to see more details about the network. Put a tick in the box next to the box labeled "Show Password". A window will pop up, which will prompt you to authenticate yourself by entering your Mac's password. Do it.

You will be sent back to the WiFi networks list but this time the password will be visible.

What do I do if you don't know the WiFi network's name

Don't worry, it's still possible to find the password through Keychain if you were linked up to that network in the past.

Launch Keychain Access like we did before and select "Passwords" as the "Category" again but this time instead of searching for the WiFi network's name, enter "airport n" into the search box. The KeyChain Access app will display a list of all the WiFi networks you have hooked up to in the past and the last time they were changed.

Check the list of networks to see if any name seems familiar. If not, find the ones that seem the most likely and proceed as above.

November 27, 2018

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