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

Comments

  1. Dnakvosas

    All of a sudden I cant get on my social security! I get:
    “We cannot process your request at this time. Please try again later.
    If you need immediate assistance: please contact us.”
    The number to call puts you on hold forever. I have been trying for two months. I have been crying with pure frustration. WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG!!!!!

    • Vonda

      Hi Dnakvosas, 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.

      • Randy

        WTF????? Are you guys dumber than Dumb with telling us to try to sign on when that’s what our complaints are??? SMFH

  2. Jo S.

    There is some kind of scam going on here. I was on the ssline and a chat line popped up and said they could help me for $1.00. So I entered into a chat and got no where and they charged our credit care $52.00. The company is called Just Ask and it seems like the person helping you is from social security. We have to go thru the dispute process now.I need documents for a loan and I don’t see how it is going to happen.

    • Vonda

      Hi Jo, thanks for using our blog. We are sorry to hear about your experience. The Social Security Administration does not charge a fee to speak to their representatives.  

      Some private companies not affiliated with Social Security or any other government agency charge fees for this service. Be cautious about giving your private information, especially your Social Security number, to anyone. 

      Be sure and stay away from unfamiliar sites and ensure that you’re at ssa.gov. We take protecting the public’s personal information very seriously. All of our online applications use an identity verification process to protect the privacy of your identity and your Social Security information.

      If you need a benefit verification letter, check out our Frequently Asked Questions web page. This letter is sometimes called a budget letter, a benefits letter, a proof of income letter or a proof of award letter. You also may be able to request a benefit verification letter by using our automated telephone service at 1-800-772-1213. You can conduct the automated services 24 hours a day. At the prompt, indicate that you’re requesting a proof of income letter. We hope this helps.

  3. Andy

    I have had an SSA account for several years with multiple successful logins. For the last two weeks (multiple attempts), after entering username and password, I get this message: “We cannot process your request at this time. Please try again later.
    If you need immediate assistance: please contact us.”
    Called the 800 # and sat on hold for over 30 minutes.
    I tried to reset my password, but got the same message.

    How do I access my account?

    • cynthia p.

    • dnakvosas

      I click sign into my acct and get “We cannot process your request at this time. Please try again later. Same problem as you. Have you figured it out yet???

    • Vonda

      Hi Andy, thanks for using our blog. 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.

  4. JIM B.

    I have been trying to get into my social security account but it says “we cannot find an account for the user name”. When I try to reset is it tells me there is already an account in that name. I have tried calling the 800 number and ask for “help desk”, which is not an option. I read answers for other people and it is always the same answer, “call the 800 number”.

    • cynthia b.

      This phone number is a waste of time just reset my pass word.

    • Vonda

      Hi Jim, thanks for using our blog. 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.

  5. Dora C.

    Every time I log in using Login.gov I am sent to the terms of service and then to verify my information. I enter all the information only to be told an account has already been created. I’m then directed back to the login page only for the same results. It a loop that I can’t get pass.

    • gen

      i get the same thing someone please help

    • Doug

      The same thing happens to me, the unending loop of filling out the same information but failing to access my account. I see from these comments that this system has been broken for many people for a very long time. It’s a sad testimony of the health of our federal government.

    • Vonda

      Hi Dora, thanks for using our blog. 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.

      • Marym221@gmail.com

        I keep getting temporary password sent to me which are expired the last one was only seven days old even though it’s supposed to take 5 to 10 days to get the mail for some reason it still expired.

      • Scott M.

        Same issue, posted separately. Asks for my information then tells me an account has already been created.

  6. Lynn

    I have been trying to login in for almost two months now. I called the 1-800 number numerous times. They sent me a temporary password, which did not work. I have been locked out for 24 hrs so many times. When I talked to a rude woman today at the 1-800 number, she replied that she unlocked me and she had no time to help me. Tried again tonight & I am locked out again. This is exhausting and I am lost as to what to do !!!!!

    • Vonda

      Hi Lynn, thank you for using our blog. We are sorry that you are having difficulty accessing your my Social Security online account. We have established a dedicated my Social Security Hotline. To reach this hotline, call 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! 

  7. Robert

    Why can’t I access “my social security” online account after hours? Keeps telling me it’s not available at this time and to try again during business hours.

    • Lynne

      Same for me for a year now and can’t get through to get help.

      • Vonda

        Hi Lynne, thanks for reaching out. We are sorry  to hear about the difficulties you are experiencing.  You can call us at 1-800-772-1213 between 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (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.

      • Rob G.

        Same here. It’s an endless loop of providing the same info over and over again, with no positive results.

    • Vonda

      Hi Robert, thank you for using our blog. We are sorry that you are having difficulties with our site. The online hours of operation are: Monday-Friday 5AM – 1AM ET, Saturday 5AM – 11PM ET and Sunday 8AM-11:30PM ET. We hope this helps. 

  8. Cesar

    My wife forgot her password to access her SSA account to apply for Medicare part B.
    We have requested several times for temporary PW by mail but we haven’t receive any. Is there any other way to get her account un locked.

    • Vonda

      Hi Cesar, thank you for using our blog. We are sorry that your wife is having difficulty accessing her my Social Security online account. We have established a dedicated my Social Security Hotline. To reach this hotline, call 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). She can also contact her local Social Security office directly. Look for the general inquiry telephone number using our Social Security Office Locator link. We hope this helps! 

  9. doug

    I am helping my elderly mother in law. I created an account for her, but the system then told us there was already an account. I was able to get the user name, but when I added SS number and birthdate for verification, the system rejected that info and locked me out. Help!

    • Vonda

      Hi Doug, thank you for using our blog. We are sorry that your mother in law is having difficulty accessing her my Social Security online account. We have established a dedicated my Social Security Hotline. To reach this hotline, she can call 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). She can also contact her local Social Security office directly. Look for the general inquiry telephone number using our Social Security Office Locator link. We hope this helps! 

    • Rob G.

      Same here! Did SSA get any of the ARPA money? If so, you need to overhaul your over-sensitive online “access.”

  10. Gary P.

    Is there a way to reset the forgotten password security questions after I receive my temporary password?

    • Vonda

      Hi Gary, thanks for using our blog. Check out our Blog: Are you Having Difficulties Accessing your Personal My Social Security Account. If you still need assistance, we have established a dedicated my Social Security Hotline to assist with your account issues. You may call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778), Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. At the voice prompt, say “helpdesk”; or 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 helps.

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