Tips to complete account recovery steps
If you can't sign in, follow these steps to increase your chances of getting back into your Google Account:
- Go to the Account help page.
- As you complete the steps, use as many of the tips below as you can. (You might not see all the questions described here.)
If you already tried to recover your account and got a "Couldn't sign you in" message, you can try again.
Try not to skip questions. If you're unsure of an answer, take your best guess rather than moving on to another question.
- Use a computer, phone, or tablet where you frequently sign in
- Use the same browser (like Chrome or Safari) that you usually do
- Be in a location where you usually sign in, like at home or at work
Details matter, so avoid typos and pay attention to uppercase and lowercase letters.
If you're asked for the last password you remember, enter the most recent one you recall.
- If don't remember your last password: Use a previous one that you do remember. The more recent it was, the better.
- If you can't confidently recall any previous passwords: Take your best guess.
If you're asked a security question and you:
- Don't remember the answer: Take your best guess.
- Know the answer but didn't recover your account on your first try: Consider a different variation of the answer. For example, try "NY" instead of "New York" or "Phil" instead of "Philip."
If you don't remember the month and year you created your Google Account, here are some ways to find out.
- Look for a sign-up email. If you can get your email for the account, search for a welcome message from Google or Gmail. If you can't, check for a verification email on another account that you used then.
- Ask your contacts. If you use Gmail, ask friends and family when they first got an email from your account.
- Think about related events or purchases. Try to remember if you created your account when you:
- Had an important life event, like graduating.
- Bought a new device. Look for any receipts or contracts that could be helpful.
If you can't find out the date, take your best guess.
If you're asked to enter an email address you can check now, enter one that you've added to your account. Here are some examples:
- A recovery email address helps you get back in and is where we send you security notifications.
- An alternate email address is one you can use to sign in.
- A contact email address is where you get information about most Google services you use.
If you're asked why you can't access your account, include helpful details.
Some examples are:
- You're traveling.
- You get a specific error message.
- You think your account was compromised because of malware or another reason.
- You changed your password last week and can't remember it.
If your description matches the information we have, this similarity can help your case.
Still can't get in? Consider recreating your lost account.
Nick is an Accounts expert and the author of this help page. Leave him feedback below about how to improve it.