Outlook.com account help


Help protect your account

Follow these tips to help keep your account safer and make it easier to recover if it's compromised.

Create a strong password for your account



Don't use the same password for different accounts.

Do make the new password significantly different from previous passwords.

Don't recycle passwords.

Do change your password regularly.

Don't use a single word for your password.

Do use a password phrase (no spaces between words) that can’t be easily guessed.

Don't use easy-to-remember personal info like your name, names of family members, your address, or phone number.

Do use an easy-to-remember sentence or phrase converted into a string of initials, numbers, and symbols.

Don't use passwords like "password," "money$$$," or "12345678."

Do use our password checker to test your new password before you use it.

Make sure your operating system has the latest updates

Most operating systems have free software updates to enhance security and performance. Because updates help keep your PC safer, we strongly recommend that you set up your PC to get these updates automatically.

You can set up your PC to get the latest updates automatically for Windows 8.1, Windows 7, Windows Vista, or Windows XP.

Never reply to email asking for your password

Microsoft will never ask for your password in email, so never reply to any email asking for any personal information, even if it claims to be from Outlook.com or Microsoft.

Turn on two-step verification

Two-step verification helps protect your account by making it more difficult for a hacker to sign in, even if they've got your password. Any time you sign in from a device that isn’t trusted, you'll be prompted to enter a security code. Get more info at Two-step verification: FAQ.

Make your account easier to recover

Add security info to your account to make it easier to recover your account if it’s hacked. Because this info can help keep your account safe, it's a good idea to add as much as possible. Get more info about why it's a good idea to add security info.

To add security info

  1. Sign in at https://account.live.com.

  2. Click Edit Security info. Because your security info helps protect your account, you’ll be prompted to sign in again. If you’re not signing in from a trusted device, you’ll also need to request a security code and enter it.

  3. If you don’t have access to any of the security info currently on your account, select I don’t have these anymore in the dropdown and follow the prompts to update your security info.

Check your recent activity

If you receive an email notifying you of unusual activity, you can see when and where your account has been accessed, including successful sign-ins and security challenges, on the recent activity page at https://account.live.com/activity. If you’re not sure the email is from Microsoft, check out How to recognize phishing email messages, links or phone calls. It has tips to help you determine if an email is from a legitimate source.

To get more info on your recent activity, see What is the recent activity page?

For more help with keeping safe online, contact customer support.

See more

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