This article provides all the information you'll need for passwords in Office 365, like changing your password when it expires, getting help if you forget your password, and finding answers to your questions about your password.

What do you want to do?

Change your password

Maintain access to your account on your mobile device or desktop email program after you change your password

Reset your password

For admins: Reset your own password

For admins: Set a password expiration policy for users

Password information for Office 365 pre-upgrade

Change your password

Office 365 requires that you use a password when you sign in. The first time you sign in to Office 365, you use the temporary password that is given to you by your admin, and then you create a new password to use from then on. 

Passwords expire after a certain length of time set by your organization. And 14 days before your password is set to expire, a reminder to change your password is sent to your Office 365 account. You can also change your password at any time after you have signed in.  

When you change your password in Office 365, be sure to update the password on your phone and desktop email program to match the new password for your account. A user can change their own password if they know their current password. If a user has forgotten their password, they need to have their admin reset their password. See Reset your password later in this article.

For more information, see Change your password

Some users can’t change their password in Office 365 because their organization creates and maintains the accounts for those users. If you don’t see a link to change your password on the Passwords page (Settings > Office 365 settings > Passwords), you can’t change your password in Office 365. Your organization might have sent you instructions to help you change your password. Follow these instructions to change your password, or ask your admin for help.  

For more information, see Change the password for your organizational account

Maintain access to your account on your mobile device or desktop email program
after you change your password

You can make sure that your Office 365 password doesn’t expire by regularly changing your password. After you change your password, update your password on any phones, tablets, or computers that you use to access your account. For example, if you have a Windows Phone and a computer that runs Outlook, you need to update the password on your Windows Phone and also in your Outlook settings.

Here are some additional tips:

  • If you regularly sign in to the Office 365 portal or regularly access your email account using Outlook Web App, you are prompted to create a new password when your current one expires. That’s your cue to update the password setting on your mobile device or desktop email program to match your new password.
  • If you don’t regularly sign in to the Office 365 portal or regularly access your email account by using Outlook Web App, you might not be aware that your password has expired. If it has, you’re prompted to change your password when you try to sign in.

Reset your password

If you forget your Office 365 password, your admin can reset it for you.

Note:  If a user knows who their Office 365 admin is, they can contact them and ask them to reset their password. Alternatively, a user can initiate a request to have their Office 365 admin reset their password by going to the on the Office 365 sign in page at https://login.microsoftonline.com, and then selecting Can’t access your account?.

They can provide you with a new temporary password to use the next time you sign in. This password is sent to an email account that’s not your Office 365 email account. Be sure to have that information available for your admin when you request a password reset. You’ll be prompted to change the password the next time you sign in. 

If you are an admin and need more information see Reset a user’s password

If you’re the only admin in your organization, you can reset your own password if you set a few things up in advance. For more information, see the next section For admins: Reset your own password.

For admins: Reset your own password

If you’re one of several admins for Office 365 and have forgotten your password, ask another admin to reset it. 

If you’re the only admin, you can reset your own password. Only admins can reset their own passwords.  

To reset your own password, click Can’t access your account? on the Office 365 sign-in page and then follow the instructions. You must have already provided an alternate email address and a mobile phone number that can receive text messages.  

For more information about adding an alternate email address and mobile phone number, see the following:

 NOTE: You need a mobile phone that can receive text messages for password reset only if one or both of the following applies to you:

  • Your organization has a custom domain that you’ve set up to use with Office 365.
  • Your Office 365 account is synchronized through directory synchronization.

For more information about resetting your admin password, see Reset passwords for admins.

For admins: Set a password expiration policy for users

User passwords expire on a regular basis in Office 365. As an admin, you can set a policy to make a user's password expire after a certain number of days. Users are then sent a reminder to change their password before their password expires. 

For more information, see: