How do I recover my Duo Mobile accounts to a new phone?

Hi. I joined to try and get Duo Mobile working on my new phone. I have spent the last hour getting nowhere and only have three more goes at recovery. I thought I had all the information I need to move my settings to the new phone, but apparently not. I simply do not understand what I am supposed to be doing. I still have the old phone and Duo is working on it, but I cannot make any sense of the various help pages. And I don’t even know how to ask this question on this Duo Community site. So I am asking here… sorry if it is the wrong place. Help :frowning:

Hi @RPJ, I’ll be happy to help you as much as I am able to! I’m going to move your question to its own post in the Duo Mobile category, so we keep this thread on topic. It also makes it easier not only for others to answer your question but also for anyone who has a similar issue to find the answer in the future!

ETA: It’s great news that you still have your old device with Duo Mobile working on it. :smiley: This makes it much easier to assist in this situation. Are your phones both on the same platform? Currently, it is not possible to restore your accounts in Duo Mobile across platforms (Android to iOS or vice versa).

It would also help me to know which types of accounts you are trying to restore. Do you use Duo Mobile to protect your personal accounts like Instagram or Facebook, or for accounts protected through an organization like your work or school, or both? The recovery process differs slightly for each.

If you are trying to recover personal accounts like Instagram, you have a few options:

  • Since you still have your old phone and are able to access the account through there, you could log in to Instagram (for example) and disable 2FA directly from the profile security settings there, then set up 2FA again on your new phone.
  • If you backed up your accounts on the old phone and have simply forgotten your recovery password (needed to restore the accounts in Duo Mobile), you can reset the recovery password on the old phone following the steps linked here.
  • If you never backed up your accounts before, you can also back them up now on the old phone before restoring them to the new phone.

Let me know any questions you have, and I can try to guide you through the process!

Hi Amy

Thanks for your reply. I am at a complete loss to know how this community site works. It feels like a forum, but I cannot find out how to start a thread, or how to get to the thread you have moved my message to. Well, I found it by clicking on ‘unread (1)’ in the pull down menu but have no idea how to get there. Also, there was a link asking me if I wanted to be notified of responses. I clicked on it and a message flashed up saying notifications disabled - and the link has disappeared…

I do not think of myself as a complete idiot, but am starting to feel like one…

What is going on? How do I get access to my Duo TFA on my new phone?



I replied to your email and both messages suddenly opened up… I still have no idea how to get here. I found ‘Enable Notifications’ in preference settings, but clicking it does not seem to change anything…

In answer to you questions, I use Duo to log into three commercial sites, none of which are social media. I installed Duo directly onto my personal Mac. It is not part of a work organisation and do not have an admin I can refer to. Both phones are iOS.

Hi @RPJ, you are definitely not an idiot! You’re simply new to the platform and learning, as everyone is at one point in time :slightly_smiling_face: You are correct that the community is a forum. You get here by visiting

You will then be on the homepage view of the community. If you’re not logged in, you can do so using the button in the upper right corner.

Once logged in, you will find the “Create a post” button to start a new thread in the middle right of the page, below the banner and above where the list of latest posts starts.

After selecting “Create a post” a window will open where you can type your post including the title and any body text you wish to include. You will need to select a category from the dropdown menu in order to publish your post, and you can either scroll through the list to find the most accurate category for your topic (what is your post about?) OR my preferred method, since the category list is quite long and not conducive to scrolling - you can click in the box and start typing, and any categories containing what you’ve typed will show up. You can then click one to select it.

From the homepage of the community, or any “filtered” view (such as the Unread tab you mentioned, which only shows unread posts) you can click on any post title to be taken to that post’s page to read the post and any replies it has.

I hope that helps with community navigation and use! This is all from a desktop, by the way, but the experience should be similar or basically the same on mobile, too.

Thank you for sharing that info! From what you’ve said here, it sounds like you are using Duo Mobile for third-party accounts (that is, any accounts you manually add to protect with Duo Mobile using passcodes and that don’t have a Duo administrator).

On your old device:

  1. Ensure you have iCloud keychain enabled and back up your device.
  2. Open the Duo Mobile app.
  3. Select the icon for Settings from the hamburger menu on the left.
  4. Click Duo Restore, and then toggle on Automatically reconnect third-party accounts.
  5. Enter a recovery password.

On your new device:

  1. Restore your new device from your iCloud backup.
  2. Open the Duo Mobile app on your new device and tap Continue on the welcome screen.
  3. Duo Mobile prompts for the recovery password you created when you enabled and then tap Reconnect . Duo Mobile restores your third-party accounts.

There is a video on how to do this here:

Please note that the video shows a previous version of Duo Mobile, so some of the screenshots and button placements may be different from what you see in the app today.

Hi Amy, I followed the instructions above to the letter. I enabled ‘Reconnect Automatically’ and set up a password on my old phone. Then I opened the app on the new phone and entered the password, including ‘Show’ password to confirm it was correct, but it would not recognise it. Convinced I had made a mistake I redid everything and scrutinised the passwords and prompts but I ran out of tries. I now have to reconnect manually. Essential services like Duo should not be this difficult. I am trying very hard not to be angry. But I know I will be tempted not to use sites and services that use Duo.

Hi @RPJ, I’m sorry this happened to you, and you had such a frustrating experience with the app. From what you’ve said here, I can’t understand why the restore process failed. I will be sure to share your feedback with the mobile team.