I'm a long-time user of Authy for 2FA on many of my Internet-based accounts. Authy has a cool feature whereby you can use it across multiple devices, with the help of a backups password. This has worked well for a couple of years, using an iPhone app, iPad app, and a Chrome desktop app on Windows 10.

Yesterday and today I added 4 new accounts using the iPhone app - that all works fine on the iPhone and I can see the OTP codes. But when I tried to see the OTP codes for those 4 accounts using the Chrome desktop app, it challenged me for the backups password (but not for the many older accounts). Then it refused to accept the backups password stored in my password manager. Even though the backups password is correct, and hasn't changed since it was created.

So I used the iOS app to change the backups password. That was successful.

Now when I launched the Chrome desktop app, it recognised that the backups password had changed and prompted me for the new password. When I entered that, it said "successful" and then re-encrypted the accounts locally. But it still has the same problem - each of those 4 new accounts needs entry of the new backups password, but the app rejects the password that it had previously accepted.

I've raised a support ticket with Authy, but checking here to see if an Authy user has seen this issue before and solved it. Google isn't much help, but I can see that somebody has experienced something that looks almost identical.


I just experienced this too, including only having a couple problematic tokens in chrome initially followed by complete lockout after I reset the backup password in iOS.

It's hard to say if this is exactly what your issue was so YMMV, but I think that the Chrome app & extension are unable to decrypt any of your tokens if even just one of them is corrupt.

Here is a workaround I stumbled upon through trial and error:

  1. Install and activate the Windows desktop Authy app (Note: this is not the same as the Chrome desktop app). It's possible you could use the MacOS app too, but I did not try it.
  2. Decrypt your tokens in the Windows app using your backup password. Most of your tokens should be decrypted now. In your tokens list, you will see one or more tokens that indicate that they cannot be decrypted on this device.
  3. Remove the authenticator requirement from all of the services with problematic tokens. (hopefully the tokens on the iOS devices aren't actually corrupt so that you can do this)
  4. Delete these problematic tokens from within the Windows app. They will instantly be deleted. Attempting to delete them from your the iOS app will put them on a 48 deletion timer instead which is why you want to delete them from the Windows app.
  5. Your backup password will now work in Chrome. If not, try uninstalling the Chrome app / plugin. Reinstall it and re-register it as a new device.
  6. Generate new tokens for the ones that were deleted.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.