Create App Passwords for Outlook.com IMAP, POP Access

Password message on computer screen
Epoxydude / Getty Images

Using application passwords, you can access an Outlook.com account through POP or IMAP even with 2-step authentication enabled.

Is Your Outlook.com So Secure Not Even You Can Use It?

To keep your Outlook.com account secure, two-step authentication with its need for both a password and a code generated in near time is an invaluable tool. Email programs logging on to Outlook.com via POP only know your password, though, and can fetch no code.

While the Outlook.com password will be refused and you'll get a log-in error in your email client, you can set up specific Outlook.com passwords for use in email programs that work even with two-step authentication otherwise required. You can create a new POP password for each application, and if anything spurious happens, all the passwords so set up are disabled easily and fast.

Set Up Application-Specific Passwords for Accessing Outlook.com via POP

To create a new password for allowing an email program to log in to your Outlook.com account even when you have two-step verification enabled:

  1. Click your name or avatar in Outlook.com's top navigation bar.
  2. Select Account settings from the menu that shows.
  3. Go to the Security & privacy category.
  4. Select More security settings under Account security.
  5. If prompted:
    1. Type your Outlook.com account password over Password.
    2. Click Sign in.
  6. Click Create a new app password under App passwords.

    Use the password that appears under Use this app password to sign in in the email program as the POP password.

    Disable Application-Specific Passwords in Outlook.com

    To delete application passwords associated with your Outlook.com account and prevent log-in using them:

    1. Open your account's Security settings page using the steps 1–5 above.
    1. Follow the Remove existing app passwords link under App passwords.
      • All passwords you have set up for your Outlook.com account will be disabled. You cannot delete specific passwords, and will have to change the Outlook.com POP passwords in all your email program.
    2. Click Remove.

    (Updated April 2016)