PIN and password FAQs

We've made some updates to better protect your MileagePlus account.

As of February 11, 2016, we require all MileagePlus accounts to have a strong password and new security questions. Please sign in and update your account if you haven't already.

On August 12, 2016, we added additional authentication to the sign-in process. You'll be asked to answer your security questions the first time you sign in on a web browser and device that we don't recognize.

  • Did you make a recent change to PINs and passwords?

    Yes. We know that the security of your MileagePlus account is very important to you, and it's important to us, too. We're now requiring that all accounts have a strong password and new security questions. Once you update your account with a strong password and security questions, you'll no longer be able to use your PIN to sign in.

    On August 12, 2016, we also added additional authentication to the sign-in process. You'll be asked to answer your security questions the first time you sign in on a web browser and device that we don't recognize. Examples of web browsers include Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari and Mozilla Firefox. If you sign in from a new browser, you'll be asked your security questions even if you've signed in from the same device before.

  • Are you getting rid of PINs? Or do I still need one?

    Once you update your account with a secure password and security questions, you'll no longer be able to use your PIN.

  • What happens now when I call the contact center?

    If you contact United by phone, you'll be asked for the first five characters of your password when using the voice recognition system — you'll just need to say them aloud. If you speak with a United representative, you'll be asked for your security answers.

  • What is your new authentication process? Why do you use it?

    Our new authentication process makes your account even more secure. When you attempt to sign in to your account, we'll check if you’ve signed in from the same browser and device before and if not, you'll just need to answer your security questions.

    This way, even if someone was somehow able to get ahold of your MileagePlus number and password, they wouldn't be able to sign in to your account as easily.

  • Why do I have to answer my security questions every time I sign in, even though I've selected "Remember this browser on this device"?

    The "Remember this browser on this device" option uses cookies, which are small bits of information stored on your computer in your browser. If your browser is set up to remove cookies regularly — many workplaces have their employee's browsers configured this way — the "Remember this browser on this device" option will not work.

  • How do I remove cookies from my browser?

    Many websites use cookies to personalize and improve your website experience, but if you’re having issues with a site's functionality it sometimes helps to remove them. Please note that removing cookies will mean you need to enter your security questions the next time you sign in to united.com, even if you’ve selected the "Remember this browser on this device" option.

    The way to delete cookies varies by browser type, so you may want to find instructions for your specific browser. In general, you’ll need to go to your browser settings, find your advanced or privacy settings and then look for an option to clear cookies or browsing history.

  • What happens if I answer my security questions incorrectly?

    If questions are answered incorrectly, we'll protect your account from further sign-in attempts by locking it. You'll need to unlock it by selecting the unlock link in the message we send to the email address in your account or by calling the MileagePlus Service Center.

  • Why can't I type my own security answers?

    We conducted a lot of research into the security issues our customers face and found that the majority of issues can be traced to computer viruses that record typing. This is called "keystroke logging." We purposely chose to use predefined answers to protect your account against this type of intrusion.

    Also, we used to let people write their own questions and answers, and many users struggled to come up with secure options. For example, their security "question" would just be their password written out. Implementing the new security questions and answers has helped decrease account security issues significantly.

  • Why do you lock accounts?

    If security questions are answered incorrectly, we want to protect your account from further sign-in attempts so that someone can't force their way into your account. If your account is locked, you'll need to unlock it by selecting the unlock link in the email we send to the email address in your account or by calling the MileagePlus Service Center.

  • Can I still earn miles if my account is locked?

    Yes. As long as you have an active MileagePlus account you’ll be able to earn miles. If you're unable to log in when you're booking a reservation on united.com or the United app, you can add your MileagePlus number when you're entering the passenger information for your ticket.

  • Why do I need a MileagePlus password and security questions?

    In order to access your account on united.com, the United app and some of our partner apps and websites, we now require that you have a strong password for instances when we do not recognize your computer. Your security questions will be used to verify your identity – for example, if you forget your password, as well as for two-factor authentication and when verifying your account with a United representative on the phone.

  • Do you use the answers to my security questions for marketing purposes?

    No, your answers and your password are encrypted and will not be used for any purpose other than authenticating your identity. Nobody will be able to see or review your questions, answers or password.

  • Why don't you use the same security questions as other websites? I like those better.

    We know that our questions are unique, and that's part of the point — it's more secure to have questions that don't cross over with your profile on other websites. And a lot of questions on other websites, such as your mother's maiden name, are fairly easy to figure out using a little Internet research.

  • I don't think I'll remember the answers to my questions. What should I do?

    We tried to create questions that have memorable, unique answers, but if you really don't think you can remember your answers, it's perfectly fine to save them to a password manager. We hope you can find questions that you'll remember, though – we're working on adding more of them. You can go back and change your questions and answers to add the new ones, if you want. Please keep in mind that you'll have to change all of your questions, not just one or two.

  • Why don't your preset answers include [fill in the blank]?

    We spent a significant amount of time and research trying to represent a wide variety of answers, but we know that we weren't able to include every possible preference. If a question is missing an answer that you think should be on the list, let us know and we may be able to add it at some point.

  • Are mashed potatoes a real pizza topping?

    Yes – it’s no joke. Some of our favorite Chicago pizza places offer some really interesting toppings.

  • Can I view the security questions that I set up?

    In order to protect the security of your account, we do not display your saved questions and answers in your account. But you can always update your questions and answers by selecting "Change Security Questions" on the Profile page of united.com

  • Why can I set up a username in my account if I can't use it?

    We know it's frustrating to have an account option that you can't actually use, but we're working to remove this functionality as part of an upcoming redesign of the My Account section. We've found that using your MileagePlus number is much more secure than having you use a username.

  • Why can't I sign in with my email address?

    It’s rather easy for others to figure out your email address, but figuring out your MileagePlus number is fairly difficult. We understand that it can be a little more effort for you to remember, but it does a much better job of protecting your account.

  • What should I do if I forget my MileagePlus password?

    You should be able to set a new password online. If you receive a message that your account is locked, you can contact the MileagePlus Service Center for assistance.

  • Can I change my password?

    Yes, just sign in to your MileagePlus account and then go to the "Profile" section of your account. We recommend that you change your password frequently and that you do not use the same password that you use for other online accounts.

  • I'm having trouble logging in. What should I do?

    If you've forgotten your MileagePlus number, go to the Forgot Your MileagePlus Number? page. If you've forgotten your password, go the MileagePlus Password Reset page. If you're still having issues, you can contact the MileagePlus Service Center for assistance.

  • I think my account has been compromised. What should I do?

    If you notice unusual activity on your account, we suggest that you change your MileagePlus password immediately and contact the MileagePlus Service Center.

  • Why do I have to provide an email address as part of my MileagePlus account?

    We use your email address to contact you about administrative, security or operational issues – for example, if you forget your password or lock your account.

    We may also use your email address for marketing purposes as shown in your MileagePlus email subscription preferences. You can change your preferences by signing in to your MileagePlus account and then going to the "Profile" section of your account.