…so you don’t get locked out of Twitter if your usual two-factor authentication fails!

I originally wrote these instructions on how to access your one-time use backup verification code back in October 2020 after seeing that one of my Twitter friends was locked out of his account due to a problem with Twitter that was preventing people from using a code sent to their phone to regain access to their account. Now that Twitter has decided to remove the option to verify by text message, this will apply to everyone who isn’t paying for Twitter Blue. You need the one-time backup code so you don’t get inadvertently locked out of your account.

The one-time use backup verification code is a code that can be used to regain access to your account if your regular two-factor verification isn’t working, but you’ll need to record it somewhere safe before you have access problems. Do it now while you’re thinking of it!

Also, check out my next post on how to set up two-factor authentication with an authentication app.

Once you’re locked out, it’s too late, so take care of this right away if you haven’t already done it!

Step 1

On the PC, choose More from the Main Menu that is on the side of your screen. (I highlighted the option to make it stand out.)


Twitter Main Menu, choose the menu option for More

Step 2 

From the menu that popped up when you chose More,
select the Settings and Support option, then
select the Settings and privacy option. 


The Twitter More Menu on PC, Choose Settings and privacy from it

Step 3 

Click “Security and account access(edited to reflect the name change) to expand it, then choose “Security” on the right. 


Twitter Menu 3 - Choose Account on left and Security on right

Step 4 

On the Security menu that pops up, choose Two-factor authentication“.


Twitter Security Menu, choose two-factor authentication

Step 5 

Select “Backup codes” near the bottom of the “Two-factor authentication” menu.

NOTE: After getting your emergency back code, we’ll return to this menu to set up an Authentication app. 


Twitter Two-factor authentication menu

Step 6 

The dialog box that now appears will show you your backup code directly beneath the text you see in this image. Jot it down in a notebook or other safe place where you can find it when you need it!


Backup Code box - your code will appear here

And you’re done!

Reminder: The backup code can only be used ONCE. If you have to use it to access your account, immediately go through the steps to generate a new code and jot that one down somewhere safe for the next time.

NOTE: Now that you have your emergency backup code, check out my next post to find out how to set up an Authentication app for your two-factor verification!

Image Credits: screenshots are all by Jennifer Yuen, keyboard image is from Stencil and used with permission.