Unlock your Pixel phone with your fingerprint

If your phone has a fingerprint sensor, either on the display or on the back of your device, you can use your fingerprint to unlock your phone, authorize purchases, and unlock certain apps.

Learn how to set up Fingerprint Unlock on your Pixel phone with our step-by-step tutorial.

Important: Some of these steps work only on Android 9.0 and up. Learn how to check your Android version.

Set up a fingerprint

You can use the Pixel phone simulator for a step-by-step tutorial to set up Fingerprint Unlock.

Tip: Anyone whose fingerprints you add will be able to unlock your phone and authorize purchases with your account. If other people share your phone, they should add their fingerprints from inside their own profiles. Learn about user and guest profiles.
On Pixel 6 and later phones, including Fold, follow these steps:
  1. Open your phone’s Settings app.
  2. Tap Security & privacy and then Device lock and then Face & Fingerprint Unlock and then Fingerprint Unlock.
  3. Follow the on-screen steps. If you don't already have a screen lock, you'll be asked to add a backup PIN, pattern, or password.
  4. Scan your first fingerprint.
    • The fingerprint sensor is towards the bottom of your phone’s display. Put your finger on the fingerprint icon and wait for the fingerprint sensor to light up and vibrate.
    • Press & hold your finger firmly on the screen. Start by placing the center of your finger over the sensor. Follow the instructions to adjust your finger position to capture the edges and tips of your fingerprint.
On Pixel 5a (5G) and earlier phones, follow these steps:
  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security.
  3. Tap Security & privacy and then Device lock and then Face & Fingerprint Unlock and then Fingerprint Unlock.
  4. Follow the on-screen steps. If you don't already have a screen lock, you'll be asked to add a backup PIN, pattern, or password.
  5. Scan your first fingerprint.
    • Put your finger on your phone's sensor (not its screen).
    • Hold your phone as you'd normally hold it when unlocking. For example, hold your phone with its screen facing you.

About fingerprint security

We strongly recommend locking your screen to help protect your phone. Your fingerprint sensor gives you a convenient unlocking option.

But there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • A fingerprint can be less secure than a strong PIN, pattern, or password.
  • A copy of your fingerprint could be used to unlock your phone. You leave fingerprints on many things you touch, including your phone.
  • You'll be asked to add a backup PIN, pattern, or password. Remember your backup, because you'll need to use it sometimes, like after restarting your phone, or if your fingerprint isn't recognized.
  • You can add up to 5 fingerprints.

Where your fingerprint data is stored

Your fingerprint data is stored securely and never leaves your phone. Your data is not shared with Google or apps on your phone. Learn more about how fingerprint data is secured.

Use your fingerprint

Unlock your phone
  1. Place your finger on your phone's fingerprint sensor, either on the display, power button, or the back of your phone, until your phone unlocks. On some phones, first press the power button to wake the screen.
    • Tip: On Pixel 6 and later phones, firmly press and hold your fingerprint on the sensor until your phone unlocks. Learn how to troubleshoot fingerprint issues.
  2. Sometimes, for security, you’ll need to use your backup PIN, pattern or password instead. This is required after:
    • Your fingerprint isn't recognized after a few tries.
    • You restart (reboot) your phone.
    • You switch to a different user.
    • More than 48 hours have passed since you last unlocked using your backup method.

As you use the fingerprint sensor, it will continue to adapt to your finger and improve over time. During use, images of your fingerprint are processed securely on your phone.

Authorize payments or unlock apps
If a message asks you to scan your fingerprint, follow its instructions. Your fingerprint information isn't shared with the app.

Manage fingerprint settings

Remove or rename your fingerprints
  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security & privacy and then Device lock and then Face & Fingerprint Unlock and then Fingerprint Unlock.
  3. Scan your current fingerprint or use your backup screen lock method.
  4. Make the change you want.
    • To delete a fingerprint, next to the fingerprint, tap Delete .
    • To rename a fingerprint, tap an existing fingerprint, type a new name, and tap OK.
Stop using & delete fingerprints

Option 1: Use only PIN, pattern, or password to unlock

To use your backup screen lock PIN or pattern, delete your fingerprint:

  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security.
  3. Tap Security & privacy and then Device lock and then Face & Fingerprint Unlock and then Fingerprint Unlock.
  4. Scan your fingerprint or use your PIN, pattern, or password.
  5. Next to a fingerprint, tap Delete . Repeat for all fingerprints.
Tip: You can temporarily turn off fingerprint unlocking by turning on lockdown. Learn how to use lockdown.

Option 2: Remove screen lock phone protection

We strongly recommend continuing to lock your screen for security. But if you'd rather not use a fingerprint, PIN, pattern, password, or Smart Lock:

  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security and then Screen lock.
  3. Pick None or Swipe. This will delete your fingerprints.

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