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Two-step authentication may not work if you're in a secured work location or select certain work email addresses to receive your login verification code.

Troubleshooting Your Login

Helpful terms to know

  • “Login Verification Code”—This is the code you use to log in with two-step authentication. This code expires after 10 minutes.
  • “Validation Code”—This is the code you use to validate an email or phone number. This code expires after one hour.

Logging in with two-step authentication

Validating your contact information

Other Reasons You May Have Trouble Logging In


Logging in with two-step authentication

I didn’t receive the verification code for my login.

If you selected an email address to receive your verification code, first check your junk or spam folder. If you still can’t find the email, contact your email administrator or email service provider to find out about any delivery issues.

If you selected a phone number to receive your verification code, make sure that you’re in a good service area. If the text message doesn’t arrive after 10 minutes, contact your carrier about any delivery issues.

My verification code isn't working.

Only the most recent code you request of each type will work. Make sure you’re looking at the most recent email or text message when you retrieve the code to use in My Account. If you aren’t sure which code is the most recent, or the code has expired, you can request a new code by beginning the login or contact validation process again.

You should also make sure that you’re using the correct type of code:

  • “Login Verification Code”—This is the code you use to log in with two-step authentication. This code expires after 10 minutes.
  • “Validation Code”—This is the code you use to validate an email or phone number. This code expires after one hour.

My verification codes arrive too late.

If your verification code doesn’t arrive until after the 10-minute expiration period, you won’t be able to use the code and will need to begin the login process again to receive a new code.

Phone carrier network disruptions and a poor cellular connection are the most common reasons that a text message arrives late.

For delayed email, you may want to check with your service provider or network administrator to find out if there are any known issues with email service. Sometimes, setting up automatic email forwarding from one address to another can cause delivery delays.

I no longer have access to my validated contact method.

You must call the ThriftLine to request that a Participant Service Representative remove the invalid contact information from your profile.

My financial aggregator or app or service on another website stopped working.

If you give your account credentials to a third-party application, you may receive a My Account login code each time that application attempts to retrieve information from your TSP account. Providing your TSP account credentials to a third-party application may put your account security at risk. We recommend that you only log into My Account through tsp.gov. The TSP cannot endorse any information or advice from third-party applications or services.

I can’t get back to the page to input my verification code.

If you’re trying to log in with two-step authentication and navigate away from the verification code input, you need to log in again to receive a new code. When you choose to receive your verification code by email, and you use an account that you access through a browser, make sure you open a new browser tab or window to retrieve the code.

I don’t know my password.

You may be able to reset your password online. Go to the My Account login page and select the link Forgot your password?

If that doesn’t work for you, call the ThriftLine.

I don’t know my account number.

You can request your account number online or by calling the ThriftLine. We will mail your account number to the address we have on file for you, which should take 3 – 5 business days.

To request your account number online, go to the My Account login page and select the link Forgot your account number or user ID?

I don’t know my user ID.

You can access your account with your account number and password. Then you can create a new user ID in the “Profile Settings” section of My Account.

Validating your contact information

I didn’t receive the validation code for my email or phone number.

If you added an email address in My Account and didn’t receive a validation code by email, first check your junk or spam folder. If you still can’t find the email, contact your email administrator or email service provider to find out about any delivery issues.

If you added a phone number, make sure that you indicated that the phone number can receive text messages when you added it. You can edit the number and change this selection if you need to. If the text message still doesn’t arrive, contact your carrier about any delivery issues.

My validation code isn’t working.

You should also make sure that you’re using the correct type of code:

  • “Validation Code”—This is the code you use to validate an email or phone number. This code expires after one hour.
  • “Login Verification Code”—This is the code you use to log in with two-step authentication. This code expires after 10 minutes.

My validation codes arrive too late.

If your validation code doesn’t arrive until after the one-hour expiration period, you won’t be able to use the code and will need to add or edit your contact information again to receive a new code.

Phone carrier network disruptions and a poor cellular connection are the most common reasons that a text message arrives late.

For delayed email, you may want to check with your service provider or network administrator to find out if there are any known issues with email service. Sometimes, setting up automatic email forwarding from one address to another can cause delivery delays.

I can’t get back to the page to input my validation code.

If you’re trying to validate an email or phone number, you can use the link in the validation code email or text message to return to the page where you input your validation code. If you are no longer logged in, you’ll be prompted to log in again and may need to complete two-step authentication before you can complete the process to validate your contact information. Remember that the validation code expires after one hour.

I don’t have a phone that receives text messages.

Currently, we can only send codes to a phone number by text message. When you add your phone number to My Account, you’ll indicate whether the phone can receive text messages. If you indicate that your phone can’t receive text messages, it will remain on your account as “Not Validated,” and you must add and validate an email address instead.

I have an international phone number.

You can validate an international phone number as long as you can receive text messages on that number. When you add your phone number, select the checkbox to indicate that this is an international phone number. A new field will appear to allow you to input the country code.

I don’t want to give you my phone or email.

If you are unable or unwilling to provide one of the requested contact methods, you may be unable to log into My Account.


Other Reasons You May Have Trouble Logging In

You have an older browser.

An older browser may not support the security features you need to view personal account information. Find out which browsers you can use to access My Account.

You have both a civilian and a uniformed services TSP account.

If you have two TSP accounts, you need to set up your contact information or passwords to either connect them in My Account or to keep your login information separate for each account. Find out how to set up your login information for dual accounts.

Your IP address changed.

For security reasons, the Internet Protocol (IP) address assigned to your computer or device must remain the same during your My Account session. Some network managers use security protocols to change IP addresses randomly for different online transactions, which can generate a browser-to-server authentication error.

If you are accessing your account from a workstation connected to this type of network, your My Account session may end suddenly, and you may receive a message that your IP address changed. Try accessing your account from a "dedicated" IP address, or from one that won’t change during your session.

To assist participants that use workstations connected to a .gov or .mil network with multiple security protocols, the Network Security Administrator for that Agency or Service should email the TSP Webmaster for an “IP Address Exception.”


Two-Step Authentication and Validating Contact Information

Two-step authentication helps prevent fraud.

All TSP participants must use two-step authentication to log into My Account. Two-step authentication helps you protect your account against fraud by prompting you for a one-time verification code each time you log in. This login process is more secure because it means that online access to your account requires something you know (your account number or username and password) and something you have (a one-time verification code you receive in your email or on your phone). Someone who tries to log into your account fraudulently won’t be able to gain access without the code.

Set up two-step authentication by validating your contact information.

You must add and validate at least one email address or a phone number in order to use two-step authentication. You may add and validate up to two email addresses and one phone number to your TSP account.

You can manage your contact information in the “Profile Settings” area of My Account after you log in. If you log in and haven’t yet enabled two-step authentication, you will see a prompt to validate an email or phone number before you access your account.

If you already have contact information in your account, you will see a label underneath each email or phone number that reads “Validated” or “Not Validated.” Select the “Validate” link for the contact method you want to validate. We will send you a validation code by email or text message, depending on the contact method you select. Enter the validation code in the appropriate field in your browser to complete the validation process.


Tips for Using Two-Step Authentication

Validate at least one contact method that will stay with you through career transitions, such as a personal email or personal phone number.

This is especially important if you work in a secure environment that doesn’t allow access to personal email or electronic devices. Two-step authentication may not work if you're in a secured work location or select certain work email addresses to receive your login verification code.

When you add an email or phone number, avoid closing or navigating away from the browser window.

If you need to log into your email to retrieve the validation code, open a new tab or window to do so.

You must be logged into My Account in order to enter the validation code. You have one hour to use the validation code, but My Account will automatically log you out after ten minutes of inactivity. If you do need to navigate away from My Account or get logged out before you complete the validation process, you can use the link you receive with the validation code to log in again and complete the validation process.

Consider validating two email addresses and a phone number.

When you log into My Account, you will see a prompt to choose the contact method you want to use to receive your login verification code. By validating multiple contact methods, you have more flexibility in how to access your account.

Make sure your contact method is secure.

Your account is only as secure as your login credentials. Make sure you enable any additional security features, such as two-step authentication and passcodes, on your email accounts and devices.