Your IRS Account: Verify Your Identity

When you register or log in to your IRS account, we require you to verify your identity with Secure Access. This verification process is designed to prevent unauthorized people from accessing your account.  

How to Verify Your Identity

You'll use different verification steps to register and log in to your IRS account:

When You Register

The one-time registration for IRS tools takes about 15 minutes. Have this information ready:

  • Email address
  • Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN)
  • Tax filing status and mailing address
  • One financial account number linked to your name:
    • Credit card – last 8 digits (no American Express, debit or corporate cards) or
    • Student loan or
    • Mortgage or home equity loan or
    • Home equity line of credit (HELOC) or
    • Auto loan
  • Mobile phone linked to your name (for faster registration) or ability to receive an activation code by mail

When You Log In

To  verify your identity:

  • Go to the log in page for the IRS tool you want to use
  • Enter your username and password
  • Receive a security code via text message or phone call on the phone number you provided during account set up
  • Enter the security code where prompted during log in

Each time you log in to your account, you will need a new security code.


Help with Common Issues

If you have trouble verifying your identity when you register or log in, find fixes to common issues below. Note: For security reasons, our call center can’t help with identity verification.

Your Mailing Address

Enter the address listed on your most recently filed tax return. Make sure the address you enter exactly matches how it appears on your tax return.

  • If you recently moved:
    Enter the address from the last return you filed, even if it’s not your current address. We only use this address for identity verification.
  • If you just filed a tax return with a new address:
    Try entering your old address instead. Newly submitted returns may take several weeks to process.
  • If you recently filed your first tax return:
    Select the radio button labeled 'I have not filed a tax return in the past seven years' from the ‘Filing Status’ options, if available.

Format PO Box, foreign and military addresses as follows:

  • PO Box
    In the ‘Address Line 1’ field, enter ‘PO Box’ without periods and the number.
  • Foreign Address
    Enter your city, county, province or other jurisdiction in the ‘City’ field. There’s no field for Zip/Postal code. Note: We are having technical issues registering foreign addresses. You may find alternatives to complete your task offline in Tools.
  • Military Address
    Enter APO, FPO or DPO in the ‘City’ field. Select AA, AE, or AP from the ‘State/U.S. Territory’ field.

Your Financial Account Number

We use Experian, a credit reporting company, to validate your financial account number. If you have issues:

  • Make sure you enter the correct financial account number.
  • Try entering a different account type:
    • Credit card – last 8 digits (don’t use American Express, debit or corporate cards)
    • Student loan
    • Home mortgage loan
    • Home equity (second mortgage) loan
    • Home equity line of credit (HELOC)
    • Auto loan

We may not be able to verify all financial account numbers.

Your Mobile Phone Number

The fastest way to verify your identity is with a mobile phone number associated with your name. The phone must be U.S.-based and text-enabled. We will send a one-time activation code to your mobile phone number. Once you receive it, you have 10 minutes to use it. Note: we may not be able to verify all mobile phone numbers.

  • If you don’t have a U.S.-based mobile phone number associated with your name:
    You can opt to receive an activation code by mail when you register for an IRS account. Allow 10 business days for delivery. This one-time code will allow you to create your account and is valid for 30 days.
  • If your mobile phone is in a family member’s name:
    You can attempt to sign up using mobile phone verification.  If your phone can’t be verified, you may be able to request an activation code by mail.

Receive an Activation Code by Mail

You can register for an IRS account without a mobile phone:

  • Follow the registration steps.
  • In the step for mobile phone verification, select 'Receive an activation code by postal mail.'
  • Allow 10 business days for the code to arrive by mail. The code is valid for 30 days.
  • Follow the instructions included with the code to complete registration.

This one-time code will allow you to create your account. You can then:

  • Download the IRS2Go mobile app to generate the security code needed each time you log in to your account. IRS2Go is free and available for Android devices, iPhones, iPads and Amazon Fire tablets; or
  • Receive a security code via phone call to any U.S.-based phone number each time you log in

Text Messages

When you register for an IRS account, we will send a one-time activation code to your mobile phone number. Each time you log in to your account, we will send a security code by text message or phone call. Text messages from IRS Password Service originate from “77958” and message and data rates may apply. Phone calls originate from “202-552-1226.”

  • When you receive the code, enter it quickly and accurately.
    • The code is only valid for 10 minutes. You can request a new code from the login screen. Note: you are limited to just a few attempts before you are locked out for 24 hours.
  • If you didn’t receive the text message:
    • You may have opted out of receiving messages from IRS password service. Text IN to “77958” to resume service and receive the security code.
    • Your provider may be experiencing technical issues. Request a code via phone call from the login screen or try again later.

Note: Our call center can’t troubleshoot text message delivery issues.  If you can't get a text message right now, you can get a security code via phone call.

Account Locked

For security reasons, we limit the number of login attempts you can make over a short time period. The security code we send is only valid for 10 minutes.

If your account is locked and you think you can provide the correct information: 

  • Wait 24 hours before you log in again.
  • Make sure the username, password, and security code you enter are accurate.

Note: Our call center can’t unlock your account.

Forgot Username or Password

You can reset your username and password on the login page.

  • If you forgot your username: Go to the login page and click ‘Forgot Username’ under the username box.
  • If you forgot your password: Go to the login page, enter your username and click ‘Log In.’ On the password page, click ‘Forgot Password.’

You can also re-register by clicking ‘Create Account.’

Note: Our call center can’t help you find your username or reset your password.

Change Your Mobile Phone Number, Username or Password

Log in to your account and select ‘Profile’ to change your mobile phone number, username or password.

Please note:

  • Mobile phone -  If you're unable to log in with your old mobile phone number, you may re-register by selecting ‘Create Account’ and entering a new phone number.
  • Username - If you’re a tax professional accessing e-Services, you can’t change your username.
  • Password – If you forgot your password, go to the log in page, enter your username and click ‘Log In.’ On the password page, click ‘Forgot Password.’

Report Suspicious Activity

We never call or send email or text messages asking you to provide information or log in to obtain a transcript or update your profile. Report phishing if you are unsure about the authenticity of any unsolicited communication, other than U.S. mail, that claims to be the IRS.


Secure Your Account

If you suspect suspicious login activity on your account, secure your account with one of the options below. Note: if you’re a tax professional accessing e-Services, you can’t change your username.

  • To continue to use your IRS account, log in and select “Profile” to change your password.
  • If you no longer need your IRS account, you can lock access to it. Reregister, verify your personal data (SSN, birthdate, filing status and address), then select the option to lock your account.

Reminder: Use strong, unique passwords for all of your accounts. Don’t reuse passwords or disclose them to anyone for any reason.