General, Online Services

Are You Having Difficulties Accessing Your Personal my Social Security Account?

July 1, 2021 • By

Last Updated: August 19, 2021

Are You Having Difficulties Accessing Your Personal my Social Security Account?This is part two of our three-part blog series, “my Social Security 101.” Did you miss the first blog? Please be sure to check it out.

We understand how frustrating it can be when you can’t remember your username or password, or perhaps the answers to your security questions. Fortunately, we have some tips for you to access our online services.

How to Recover Your Username

If you need to recover your username, go to the Sign In page and select “Forgot Username?” under the Username field. You will enter your email address, Social Security number, and date of birth. Then, select “Next” and you will see your username automatically inserted in the Username field for you.

The Second Factor: What You Need to Know

When you registered for a personal my Social Security account, you identified either your email address or cell phone number as your second factor for authentication. Each time you sign in to your account, we send you a one-time security code to either the email address or cell phone number you provided when you registered for your account. You will need access to that second factor as you go through the steps to reset your account password.

What to Do if You Forgot Your Password

If you forgot your password to your personal my Social Security account, you can request a temporary password to gain access. You can go to the Sign In page and select “Forgot Password?” You will then enter your username, Social Security number, and date of birth.

From there, select “Next” and you will be prompted to enter answers to your Password Reset Questions. If you remember your Password Reset Questions, provide the answers in each text box. Confirm your cell phone or email address where you should receive a one-time security code. Please enter the security code you receive, and select the “Submit Security Code,” and you’ll have the chance to update your password. Follow the prompts. You will automatically see the Terms of Service and after accepting the terms, you will be signed in to your account.

What to Do if You Forgot Your Password Reset Answers

If you don’t remember the answers to your Password Reset Questions, select the “I can’t remember my answers” and follow the prompts.

Instructions if Your Second Factor is Your Email
If you registered your email as a second factor, follow these steps:

  • Scroll down and check the “I agree to the Terms of Service” box.
  • Select “Next.”
  • You’ll come to the “Provide Information” page where you’ll enter your mailing address and primary phone number. Please note that we only need your phone number to verify your identity.
  • Select “Mail Temporary Password.”
  • Then, Select “Done” on the next page.

After completing these steps, you’ll receive a letter by mail in 5 to 10 business days. Your letter will contain a temporary password and step-by-step instructions for creating a new password.

When you receive the letter with your temporary password, go to the Sign In page and enter your username and your temporary password. Then, you can:

  • Select “Sign In.”
  • Verify your email address on the following page.
  • Select “Next.”
  • You’ll receive a security code via email—and you’ll enter the security code on the following page.
  • Select “Submit Security Code.”
  • You’ll then create your new password on the next page. Select “Next.”
  • Then, select “Next” again.
  • Scroll down and check the “I agree to the Terms of Service” box.
  • Select “Next.” This will take you to your personal my Social Security account.

Instructions if Your Second Factor is Your Cell Phone

If you registered your cell phone as your second factor, follow these steps:

  • Select “Email Temporary Password.”
  • Check your email for your temporary password.
  • Return to the Sign In page.
  • Enter your username and the temporary password.
  • Verify your cell phone number and check “Next.”
  • Enter the security code you receive on your cell phone.
  • Then, select “Submit Security Code.”
  • You’ll then create your new password on the next page. Select “Next.”
  • Then, select “Next” again.
  • Scroll down and check the “I agree to the Terms of Service” box.
  • Select “Next.” This will take you to your my Social Security account.

In part three of this blog series, we will cover how to change your second factor authentication for your personal my Social Security account.


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About the Author

Darlynda Bogle, Assistant Deputy Commissioner

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  1. Suzanne H.

    Called helpless due to ongoing issues trying to sign on using my cell. Ended up speaking to a Sonia. Sounding like either some home construction or a child banging a hammering toy in background. I told her my problem and actually had to slowly explain each step I took to only receive an error message after agreeing that I was accessing my own social security account blah blah. I would hit the next button and get a we are sorry error unable to process ..Was able to go thru on my surface pro. Sonia told me it was my internet. I advised nope same internet for surface pro. She said my internet gave me message .I advised no SSA message. She told me they only help set up or provide password user name help. I asked about a technical help source for site she said they don’t have. I mentioned the banging in background and how confusing call was. Asked for her supervisor contact and she hung up. I have a 3 digit number she gave as her ID. She didn’t even want to give me her name again. Said she said it when call answered. But all the background banging made it hard to hear. Absolutely worthless problem not answered or resolved.

    Reply
    • Ann C.

      Hi, Suzanne. We are sorry to hear about your experience. If you are still unable to access your account or encounter a problem with your personal my Social Security account, please call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778), Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. At the voice prompt, say “help desk.” You can also submit feedback by visiting our Contact Social Security page. Once there, select the “Email Us” link. This will take you to the “Email A Question to our Support Team” form where you can complete and submit a complaint. We hope this helps.

      Reply
  2. Case K.

    Also experienced difficulties yesterday and today. Verification code not reaching my phone which, until earlier this year, worked fine.

    I found the problem and solution (for me anyway – on another forum someone posted this solution:)

    Turns out, SSA’s sending text number was in my ‘blocked numbers’ on my phone. Did not know which one, so I deleted all blocked numbers and now the verification code comes through!

    So if your issue is you’re not receiving the code, try clearing the blocked numbers on your phone, it may just do the trick.

    Reply
    • Lynn L.

      Hi Case,
      I have been trying to get into my account for over a year. I called the help desk at social security and the woman was absolutely no help, in fact she was detrimental to me figuring this out in fact she advised me incorrectly.
      Your solution above was the ticket, thank you so much for posting this, I am so grateful to you taking the time to share your experience. You have saved me so much frustration, you have no idea.
      Thank you, thank you, thank you. 🙂
      Lynn L.

      Reply
  3. Karl K.

    So I have been trying to get into my ss page for months. It won’t take the password, it won’t accept my personal info questions (that I am 100% sure are correct) I have requested that they mail me the reset code by US Mail 3 times (US Mail? Really????). It’s disturbing that the government agency that is obligated to send me checks every month (I turned 65 recently) had a website with password protocols from 1973. I once again will wait for the postman to “securely” deliver my website credentials so I can access my SS account and try to do some financial planning for the remainder of my life.

    Reply
  4. Laura h.

    Same issues as everyone else. Now locked out. Waiting on hold in loop.
    Maybe if yiu made it more clear where older account holders from prior to 2018 were supposed to sign in. That would have helped. It gives the option to fill out right at that point. But that was the wrong place??? Right?.

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi Laura. We are sorry that you are having trouble accessing your my Social Security account. If you are locked out, you can call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) or you can contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. We hope this information helps.

      Reply
      • Laura C.

        I called, was on hold for 30 minutes, a woman answered, was explaining the problem and got hung up on!

        Reply
  5. Laurie F.

    On a scale of 0-10, I give SS.gov login website a Big Fat Zero. I received an email on Saturday re: the cola increase, so I decide to login to my account. Hmm, apparently I can’t do that cuz I’ve been a member too long? Since 2018? Went around in circles on Saturday with creating a new password, sign in with Login.gov, activation codes texted to me, not all in that order, mind you. When I entered my (Great!) new password, I was “told” that an account already exists in that name. Then I was blocked. Started over again on Monday morning. Same gaslighting treatment!
    Called SocialSecurity.gov. Waited on hold to talk to rep. Disconnected. Called back and waited on hold and Disconnected after 14 minutes, you know that sound, “brrrriiippp”. Done, done, and done!

    Reply
  6. Alex M.

    Hello, I can’t seem to access my ssa account. Though I also don’t remember making one, I only found out when I tried to make one today.

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi Alex, we are sorry to hear about the difficulties you are experiencing. If you created a my Social Security account before September 18, 2021, go to http://www.ssa.gov/myaccount and click on “Sign In” and then click on “Sign In To My Account” where you enter your username and password using the boxes on the far right. You do not sign in using login.gov or id.me because you created your account before September 18, 2021.

      If you continue to have difficulties, call our dedicated my Social Security Hotline at 1-800-772-1213, and say “helpdesk” at the voice prompt. The help desk is available to callers between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. (Eastern Time). You can also contact your local Social Security office directly. Look for the general inquiry telephone number using our Social Security Office Locator link. We hope this helps.

      Reply
  7. Murat M.

    Hi. I requested temporary password over and over. They never sent it. Still waiting.

    Reply
  8. Gloria L.

    I am unable to log in to my my Social Security account and there seems to be no resolution. The account was created several years ago and my password is not working and it’s not accepting my responses to the three security questions. The site offers to send a temporary password to my email, but my email address has changed and the old one is inaccessible.

    Reply
  9. Lynn L.

    I am in a social security on-line loop.
    I have had my account for years, have not changed my phone number, password or any pertinent information. I am not receiving my security code as a text (which I have received in the past). I tried last year during COVID, and I did not receive the code (first time to not receive it). I thought it was related to COVID. I am trying again, it still is not working. I called SSA Help Desk, the woman was not “helpful”. In fact she said my account is not locked out and that all I can do is delete my account and create a new one. Well, you need to get into your account to delete it, so no that does not work. I tried creating a new account, however it tells me I already have account, and will not create a new one. I am stumped. I need help, real help to get access to my account.

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi Lynn. We are sorry to hear about the difficulties you are experiencing. If you created a my Social Security account before September 18, 2021, go to http://www.ssa.gov/myaccount and click on “Sign In” and then click on “Sign In To My Account” where you enter your username and password using the boxes on the far right. You do not sign in using login.gov or id.me because you created your account before September 18, 2021.

      If you continue to have difficulties, call our dedicated my Social Security Hotline at 1-800-772-1213, and say “helpdesk” at the voice prompt. The help desk is available to callers between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. (Eastern Time). You can also contact your local Social Security office directly. Look for the general inquiry telephone number using our Social Security Office Locator link. We hope this helps.

      Reply
      • Laura C.

        None of what you are telling us to do is working. Including calling. They hang up or get disconnected!!!

        Reply
      • Lynn L.

        Vonda,
        The people at social security administration don’t seem to know what they are talking about, they do not have a clue! The woman I spoke to advised me incorrectly, causing me more harm than correcting the problem. I am not impressed with them, at all. Luckily today (11-3-21) I read someone else’s blog and was able to fix my problem.
        So much for your standard answer, it was not helpful either.
        Lynn L

        Reply
    • Case K.

      See my post earlier today – try clearing your blocked numbers from your phone. Worked for me and others, code now coming through.

      Reply
      • Lynn L.

        Hi Case,
        I was so frustrated I stopped worrying about it and finally go back to it today (11/3/21) and read your blog. Thanks to you, dear soul, it is now fixed. You are great, thank you!

        Reply
  10. Kevin C.

    I have created a new password and received the code but each time I enter the ‘form’, the screen takes me BACK to the log-in page and I have to repeat the process again only to be taken BACK to the log-in page again and again. After i verify my info in the form why does your system keep sending me BACK to the log-in page??? It says ‘an account has already been created under this user” Yes, I know, I”m logging in – NOT creating a new account

    Reply
    • Kim C.

      Same here!

      Reply
      • pat

        me too

        Reply
    • Vonda

      Kevin, we are sorry to hear about the difficulties you are experiencing. If you created a my Social Security account before September 18, 2021, go to http://www.ssa.gov/myaccount and click on “Sign In” and then click on “Sign In To My Account” where you enter your username and password using the boxes on the far right. You do not sign in using login.gov or id.me because you created your account before September 18, 2021.  If you continue to have difficulties, call our dedicated my Social Security Hotline at 1-800-772-1213, and say “helpdesk” at the voice prompt. The help desk is available to callers between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. (Eastern Time). You can also contact your local Social Security office directly. Look for the general inquiry telephone number using our Social Security Office Locator link. We hope this helps.

      Reply
      • V I.

        Same here OVER and OVER, anyone find a solution to this?

        Reply
      • Laura C.

        Please give us a better answer! Nothing you are telling us is working!!

        Reply
    • Rick

      Same here. Over and over.

      Reply
    • Jim E.

      Yep. Me too. Tried 3 times and gave up.

      Reply
    • Laura C.

      Same thing has happened to me several times. My account comes up but can’t access any of the tabs.

      Reply

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