What if I forget my PayPal password?

PayPal is an online payment solution that allows its users to pay for online purchases as well as transfer money to others around the world in a variety of currencies. Account security is paramount to the safe and efficient operation on the PayPal system. The most basic security measure is password protection. If you forget your PayPal password, you must either remember it or reset it before you'll be able to access your account.

Password Characteristics

PayPal requires that all user passwords must meet certain criteria to ensure a higher level of security. If you have difficulty accessing your account, it could be because you're entering a password for some other account that does not meet these requirements. As of March 2011, your PayPal password must contain at least one upper case letter, one number and one special character. In addition, your password must be at least eight characters in length. An example of an acceptable PayPal password is "P@ssword."

Making Guesses

If the password you are trying to use does not meet PayPal's requirements, one possible way to regain access to your account is to make an educated guess at your password with these requirements in mind. Be careful when guessing, however -- more than three incorrect guesses will cause you to be locked out of your account. If this happens, you will have to call PayPal and answer a series of security questions to unlock your account.

Requesting a New Password

If you can't remember your password and don't feel like guessing, PayPal gives you the option of resetting your password through an automated system. When you arrive at the PayPal website, click "Problems with login" and then enter the email address you used when you created the account. Input the image verification string and click "Continue." PayPal will send an e-mail to the address you provided with instructions on how to reset your password.

Successfully Resetting Your Password

Once you receive the email from PayPal acknowledging your password reset request, click the link in the message to navigate to a secure page on the PayPal website where you can reset your password. When you set up your account initially, you chose several security questions to help confirm your identity; for example, "What was the name of your first pet?" After you correctly answer these questions, you can reset your password. Keep in mind that your new password must adhere to PayPal's requirements and cannot duplicate any password that you have previously used.

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About the Author

Robert Schrader is a writer, photographer, world traveler and creator of the award-winning blog Leave Your Daily Hell. When he's not out globetrotting, you can find him in beautiful Austin, TX, where he lives with his partner.