Getting Your Account Started

How do I create a free AOL Mail email address?

Looking to sign up for a free AOL Mail email address? Sweet! Signing up is a snap.

Note: Your AOL Username is your online identity. Your Username, which is the first part of your email address, is visible to everyone when you communicate with others online. Your Username will appear in email, on your AIM Buddy List, in instant messages and in message posts.

To create a free AOL Mail email address:

1. Visit our Create a New Account page.

2. Enter your first and last name in the appropriate boxes.

3. Now the fun part - time to pick your email address! Enter a Username in the 'Pick a username' box.

Note: If the Username that you've selected is already taken, we'll suggest a couple of variations of the Username that you want.

4. In the 'Create a password' box, enter a password for your account and then re-type the password in the box below it.

5. Enter your Date of birth, Gender, and Zip code in the next three boxes.

6. Select a Security Question from the drop-down menu and then enter the answer in the box provided below the drop-down menu.

7. Enter a Mobile phone number and Alternate email address in the boxes provided. We'll only use these to help recover your account if you need to reset your password.

8. Click Signup.

9. Almost done! In the text box, type the 6-digit code that we sent as a text message to the mobile phone number that you provided and then click Finish.

Congratulations! We hope you enjoy your new AOL Mail email account!

Why is the email address that I want not available?

If the email address you want for your AOL Mail account is not available, it means that someone has already selected it for their Username. Don't worry, there are still plenty of ways to get a great AOL Mail email address.

Try some of these tips:

1. Use one of the suggested Usernames. If the email address/Username you desire is not available, we'll suggest different variations of it. If you like any of the suggestions, you can choose it by clicking on it.

2. Try a different variation of the Username that you chose:

  • Your AOL Username can contain up to 16 letters, numbers, and spaces.
  • If you don't like one of the suggested Usernames, you can try adding another word, letter, or number to the end of your desired Username to create your own variation. For example, if the Username you want is ChatmanJohn, try using Chatman_John, ChatmanJohn1980, etc.

But most of all, have fun creating the perfect email address/Username. Good luck!

How do I change my Display Name?

Have a cool nickname that you usually go by? Let people easily identify your emails by changing your Display Name.

Note: When entering your Display Name, please do not use the letters "AOL, aol, A.O.L" or any variation of AOL as this will cause issues with sending mail from your account. Some third party email clients or mobile devices may add AOL to your Display Name. If you see an error message and are having trouble sending mail, please make sure your Display Name does not have AOL in the name under the email client or mobile device's mail Account Settings.

To change your Display Name:

1. In the upper right, above your mailbox, click Options and then click Mail Settings.

2. In the left panel, click Compose.

””

3. In the box next to 'Display Name', enter the name that you'd like people to see when you send them mail.

4. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click Save Settings.

All done! People will see your new display name when you send them mail, but they'll still see your email address.

Can I link Usernames in AOL Mail?

Unfortunately, linking Usernames is no longer available. However, if you already linked Usernames, you can continue to use this feature to manage the linked accounts.

If you've linked multiple Usernames, you can view each account's mailbox without having to sign out and sign back in.

Here's how:

In the upper right, below your Username, click Options, then click the Username whose mailbox you want to view.

””

That's it -- this switches your view to the mailbox for the Username you click.

If you're having difficulty viewing Usernames you already linked, please click "Re-link Usernames" below:

Re-link Usernames

Does my AOL Mail account get deactivated if I don’t use it for 90 days?

Yes, an AOL Mail account does get deactivated if it is inactive for 90 days. To keep your AOL Mail account active, please sign in to your account at least once every 90 days. For more information, please click here.

Does AOL Mail use HTTPS for a secure connection?

Yes! AOL Mail has always used HTTPS on the sign in page (the page where you enter your Username and password) and when you needed to update your personal information. Because we value your privacy and the security of your information, we've made the additional move to use HTTPS anytime you're in your Inbox at mail.aol.com.

What's the difference between HTTP and HTTPS?

Most websites that don't require you to enter personal information use HTTP, which is fine for most browsing. However, if you need to enter personal information such as a credit card number, bank account number, or password, you'll almost always see HTTPS used in the web address field. The 'S' on the end stands for secure.

Do I need to activate HTTPS in my AOL Mail Inbox?

Nope, there's nothing you need to do. It's already activated. This is just one of the steps we've taken to keep your data secure. Now, when you're in your mail, you'll see https://mail.aol.com.

Monitoring Your Own Account

Can I view recent activity in my AOL Mail account?

Yes. Get a recent history of activity in your account by clicking Options in the upper-right corner and selecting Settings.

From the list on the left of the Settings page, click Recent Activity.

Recent Activity records the actions taken most recently in your AOL Mail account and lists the times and places you accessed it.

(Mobile devices and some other mail applications sign in repeatedly throughout the day (and night) to check for new mail. These "pings" are not recorded in Recent Activity.)

Recent Activity gives you a way to verify that only you have been using your account.

If you see a record of activity that suggests someone else accessed your account, here's what to do:

1. Move your pointer over the line of Recent Activity that seems unusual.

2. On the right end of the line, after the question "Was this you?", click No.

3. In the window that opens, click Secure your account now.

Nice work! A strong password, along with a strong Account Security Question, are the two strongest locks on your account.

Note: In certain circumstances, you won't see the Recent Activity selection in AOL Mail settings. For example, if you're using a public network at a library or coffee shop, or are on a large corporate network, AOL Mail keeps the Recent Activity feature hidden for your protection.

What is the Location column in Recent Activity and what should I look for?

Location

When you're online, the location from which you're accessing the internet is encoded in your connection.

However, this isn't foolproof. Mobile connections, for example, can be routed by providers through unexpected and sometimes distant locations. Locations can also be spoofed or masked by hackers and legitimate web surfers alike.

This is why the data in the Locations column is limited to country. If you see a country from which you know you did not sign in, it's a red flag that illegitimate access has probably occurred.

Unknown Location is not necessarily a red flag. If you see Unknown Location in your list of locations, check the date and time listed, and attempt to recall whether you signed in on that day at that time. If you did, chances are this is a valid sign-in and the Location data was simply missing or not reported properly due to an error.

Anytime you are in doubt, change your password. It's easy to do, and your password and Account Security Question are the two primary locks on your account. Make them strong so you can be confident that you are the only one with access to your account.

Note: In certain circumstances, you won't see the Recent Activity selection in AOL Mail settings. For example, if you're using a public network at a library or coffee shop, or are on a large corporate network, AOL Mail keeps the Recent Activity feature hidden for your protection.

Password Help

How do I change my AOL password?

A strong password gives you a strong defense against hackers. The L0ng3rTh3pA55w0rD is, the stronger it is. Mix in numbers and symbols. Make it tough! You can change your AOL password whenever and as often as you'd like.

To learn how to change your AOL password, please visit our help article Account Management: Managing your AOL Password.


Prefer phone support? Contact us (paid members only) or upgrade your AOL plan to receive 24/7, live AOL technical support.

Someone hacked my AOL Mail account. What do I do?

Your Sent folder may offer the best clue to whether you have been hacked or spoofed.

  • If you DO find email in your Sent folder that you did NOT send: Your account has been compromised (hacked).
  • If you DO NOT find any strange email in your Sent Folder: Your account has most likely been spoofed.

What should I do?

If your account is being spoofed, there isn't a way to stop whoever is spoofing your account right now, but changing your password can help secure your account from being compromised in the future.

1. To change your password, go to account.aol.com immediately and change your password. Use a mix of upper & lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters in your new password. Make it impossible for others to guess.

A great trick for strong passwords is using the initial letter of each word in a phrase that you remember easily. Substitute numbers & symbols where you can. To be or not to be = TBoN2B, for example.

If the password that was hacked is one you use on other sites and services, change those passwords immediately as well, but do not change them to your new AOL password. Using different passwords for your different accounts is one of the best ways to protect your online identity.

2. Sign into account.aol.com, and under "Account Recovery Information", next to Security Question, click Edit. Click the drop-down menu and select a new question, and enter the new answer.

The answer to your Account Security Question can contain numbers (no special characters). Mix in numbers to strengthen your protection. Record this answer in a safe place so you can retrieve it later if needed.

What is AOL Mail doing to prevent spoofing?

In a step to significantly reduce spoofing, we updated our DMARC policy to tell DMARC-compliant email providers like Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, Outlook.com and others (including AOL Mail itself) to reject mail from AOL addresses that is sent from non-AOL servers. You can read more about AOL Mail's move here.

If you're still unable to change your password after visiting account.aol.com, call 855-622-4946 for further instructions (Mon.-Fri. 8am-1am ET and Sat.-Sun. 8am-10pm ET).