Fix common problems with 2-step verification

I lost my mobile phone and now I can’t sign in.

Contact your administrator (usually the person who gave you the Office 365 account) to see if there is a different verification method you can use, such as your office phone or a smart card, until you replace your mobile phone.

I'm having problems with the office phone verification method

To use this verification method, your office phone must be entered in your Office 365 settings. To confirm this, click Settings > Office 365 Settings > Me, and see if the information is displayed in the Phone field.

Your phone number must have the country or region code prefixed in the following format: +NNNN NNNNNNNNNN. For example: +1 4445554444 (United States), +86 4445554444 (China), +299 4445554444 (Greenland), and +1809 445554444 (Dominican Republic).

If the correct values are not displayed, you cannot continue. Contact your admin to provide this information.

I'm not getting the verification code sent to my mobile phone

Check the notification settings on your mobile phone and enable them so that you phone calls, messaging app, or authentication app sends alerts. Push notifications are not required, but they help you complete the verification method in a timely way.

I'm not getting prompted to sign in with a second verification

There are several reasons why this might happen.

You don’t have the correct software on your device   

To enable a second verification, you need the following software installed on your device:

Check to see if Windows Update is running and that you have installed the latest updates. If you are protected by a firewall in your organization, then you might need to contact your administrator to obtain the required software.

Your device is not enabled   

To use a second verification method, your administrator not only needs to set up Office 365, but also your desktop or laptop by updating the system registry. There are several ways for your administrator to automatically update your device for you, but it’s possible that something got in the way.

First, close and restart all Office applications, or restart your device. Then, sign in to Office 365 using your work or school account. Next, examine the bottom of the sign in dialog box:

  • Your device is enabled correctly, if it looks like this:

    Device is enabled
  • Your device is not enabled correctly, if it looks like this:

    Device is disabled

    If your device is not enabled correctly, contact your administrator.

Your administrator did not enable you to use a second verification method   

It’s possible your administrator has enabled some users but not others, including you, to use a second verification method. Contact your administrator if you want to use a second verification method.

I'm having problems signing in on my mobile phone when traveling

You may find it more difficult using a mobile phone to use a verification method when you are in flight or you are in an international location. Using the mobile phone may incur roaming charges or may not even be available.

If your administrator has enabled it, consider using the Microsoft Authenticator. If you are in flight, you can use the Authenticator in airplane mode with Wi-Fi turned on and Wi-Fi is accessible on the flight. You can also use the Authenticator in an international location where you can make a Wi-Fi connection.

Related Topics

Use Microsoft Authenticator with Office 365
Sign in to Office 365 with 2-step verification
Change how you get 2-step verification codes
Admins: Set up multi-factor authentication for Office 365 users
Set up 2-step verification for Office 365
Create an app password for Office 365

Expand your Office skills
Explore training
Get new features first
Join Office Insiders