We've noticed some unusual activity on your account. To help protect you from potential fraud or abuse, we've temporarily locked your account. We know this is frustrating, but we can help you get back into your account with just a few steps.
Why accounts are locked and disabled
Microsoft accounts are usually locked if the account holder has violated our Microsoft Services Agreement. Here are some common reasons why accounts are locked, though not all account locks occur for these reasons:
Malware, phishing, and other harmful activities
Microsoft forbids the use of our services for:
- Malware: Sending intentionally unwanted or harmful code or software.
- Phishing: Stealing private information from others by tricking or spoofing them into providing it.
- Interfering with, harming, or spoofing Microsoft networks, services, or other systems.
Spam takes many forms. Don’t use Microsoft networks to send, share, or publish unwanted emails, comments, messages, photos, reviews, or any other content.
- Don’t send unsolicited promotional or commercial content.
- Don’t send content to people you don’t know or to many people at the same time.
Use of multiple accounts for abuse and other suspicious activity
- Don’t use programs, scripts, or bots to create Microsoft accounts.
- Don’t spoof or reuse information across multiple accounts when signing up.
- Don’t create or use multiple accounts to violate Microsoft policies.
Unlocking your account
To unlock your account, you must enter a security code you receive via text message from Microsoft. The phone number you use to receive this text message doesn't need to be associated with your account. It doesn't even need to be your own phone number. If your phone doesn't receive text messages, ask a friend or family member if you can use theirs.
Follow these steps to unlock your account:
- Go to https://account.microsoft.com and sign in to your locked account.
- Enter a phone number to request a security code be sent to you via text message. This can be any phone that can receive text messages.
- After the text arrives, enter the security code into the web page.
- Change your password to complete the unlocking process. Use the tips in Help protect your Microsoft account to create a strong password.
Problems with the security code
The quickest way to get your account unlocked is by requesting and entering a security code online. If you haven’t tried unlocking your account online, we recommend you start there.
- If you didn't receive your security code at the phone number you entered, try again or try a different number.
- If your security code doesn't work, make sure you enter the numbers in the body of the message, and not the numbers in the header.
- If you see a "usage limit exceeded" error message when requesting a security code, this could mean the phone number has been used too many times in a short period of time, or that we've detected something suspicious about the phone number.
- To better protect you and your information, we block the ability to request security codes from certain phone numbers when the risk of fraud is potentially detected.