I cannot reset my password or add my account to Microsoft Authenticator without access to Microsoft Authenticator

Tom Woodford 30 Reputation points

I recently got a new iPhone and went to set up Microsoft Authenticator. When adding my account, I found I needed to reset my password. In this process, I was directed to Microsoft Authenticator to verify my identity. Under other options, it offered to send a text or email verification code. When selected, no code was received by either of the alternate e-mail addresses on my account and no text was received at the mobile number associated with my account. My account details appear to be correct (I can sign into the account, but resetting the password fails to accept the current password and goes into the same authenticator routine that isn't working).

Online troubleshooter for failure to receive verification codes was followed (all options tried) but no success. The trouble shooter then dumps you in the account recovery process, but tells you it doesn't work when two-factor authentication is enabled. When I submitted the form anyway, I received an email saying it will be ignored since two-factor authentication is enabled.

Am stuck in an endless loop that requires either Microsoft Authenticator or the verification code by email or text.

Microsoft Authenticator
Microsoft Authenticator
A Microsoft app for iOS and Android devices that enables authentication with two-factor verification, phone sign-in, and code generation.
6,029 questions
Windows 11
Windows 11
A Microsoft operating system designed for productivity, creativity, and ease of use.
8,874 questions
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Accepted answer
  1. Kevin Crouch 81 Reputation points

    Hi, is this for a Work/School account, or a Personal Microsoft account?

    Try tapping on your account in the Microsoft Authenticator app, does it show just a person icon ("Personal"/Microsoft account), or does it show a person with a lanyard (Work/School account)

    • Personal/Microsoft Account


    • Work/School/Organization/Azure AD Account


    Once you tap into that account, does it mention any of these options, or is it greyed out and won't let you tap into the account?

    • Notifications Enabled
    • Passwordless sign-in Enabled
    • One-Time Password Code (And how many digits, 6 or 8)
    • Set-Up/Disable Phone Sign-In
    • Change Password
    • Update Security Info
    • Review Recent Activity

    If it is for Work/School - your IT Administrators or HelpDesk may be able to help you reset.

    Otherwise, you mentioned you can get signed into the account somewhere. You may be able to add a new Security Info method from that machine and then use that to verify later to reset your password.

    If none of those options are helping, then can you double-check your current password in an Incognito Window in Edge.

    Otherwise, you can try the usual methods of checking Junk/Spam folders with your recovery email / Cell service providers, but past that if you aren't receiving the Text messages or Emails, then you may need to contact your provider.

    1 person found this answer helpful.

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  1. Anonymous

    You can restore from backup (assuming there was one) but make sure no accounts have been added to the newly install app. Then sign on with recovery account to do the restore.

    You can recover your account credentials from your cloud account, but you must first make sure that the account you're recovering doesn't exist in the Microsoft Authenticator app. For example, if you're recovering your personal Microsoft account, you must make sure you don't have a personal Microsoft account already set up in the authenticator app. This check is important so we can be sure we're not overwriting or erasing an existing account by mistake. https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/account-billing/back-up-and-recover-account-credentials-in-the-authenticator-app-bb939936-7a8d-4e88-bc43-49bc1a700a40

    Without a backup to restore from the only option is to work with each of the service provider's account recovery methods. The authenticator app is nothing more than a code generator. The two factor is turned on or off at the service provider end.


    --please don't forget to upvote and Accept as answer if the reply is helpful--

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