In order to keep your smartphone content private, screen locks play a major role. In this modern world to keep your personal, professional, and financial information on your cellphone screen lock is the basic necessity instead of a choice.
But in any case you forget your phone password; certainly, you will get locked out of your own device. However, there’s a more serious danger of overlooking because of the unique mark scanners on present-day gadgets that render passwords as a reinforcement.
Today we will help you with some of the easiest ways on how you can regain your passcode in order to gain access to your Android phone if you forget the password.
Is it accurate to say that you are sure you forgot about it?
Before we move forward, it will be good if we take a moment and make sure that you have actually forgotten your password. Android allows you to choose any number of digits as your pin, unlike the iPhone, which used to feature four-digit pin and has recently moved to six-digit codes.
In case you are trying to recall a four or six-digit code, make sure your passcode is actually a different length. This may help you remember it.
Unlock With Smart Lock
Smart Lock is a feature which is found in Android smartphones, which allows you to specify certain conditions that bypass your lock screen security. You can reach to the Smart Lock by following the simple process provided below.
Setting > Security &Location > Smart Lock
In order to access this, it is required to input your current lock password to make changes to the feature. Then you can choose five possible options to unlock your smartphone without a password.
- On-body detection: The phone senses that you’re carrying it automatically stays unlocked while it’s on your person.
- Trusted places: Uses your location to unlock your phone when you’re near an address that you’ve selected.
- Trusted devices: Keeps your device unlocked when connected to a trusted Bluetooth device, like your fitness tracker or car.
- Trusted face: Uses facial recognition to unlock your phone. You should know that this facial recognition technology invades your privacy.
- Voice match: Unlocks your phone when it hears your trusted voice.
In case you have already set up one or more of the above options before you forget your password, you can use it to get back into your phone. Although, you can’t change Smart Lock or Password setting without entering your current password. Thus, you may still need to factory reset, but at least you can back everything up first.
Option for Samsung devices
Are you using a Samsung device? No need to worry the company offers many ways to reset your screen lock code if you forget it.
Using Backup PIN (older Android Version Only)
In case you are using an older Samsung phone, which is running on Android 4.1 KitKat or earlier, you may have to set a backup PIN. Then, after providing your password or pattern incorrectly, follow these simple steps provided below.
- Tap on the Backup PIN option if you can remember it.
- Type in your PIN code, then tap Done.
- You will be redirected to the Screen Unlock settings to reset the lock screen pattern.
Find My Mobile (All Android Versions)
All the cellphones that Samsung offers, Samsung provides a feature that allows you to remotely manage the device if you lose it. You just need to be signed into your Samsung account on your phone and must have either a Wi-Fi or mobile data connection.
If you wish to rest your phone’s passcode through Find My Mobile follow the simple steps mentioned below:
- Open samsung.com on your computer.
- Log in with your Samsung account.
- Go to Unlock my Device option and follow the instructions.
Use the Forgot PIN Prompt (Android 4.4 or Earlier)
You can reset your passcode with from the lock screen if you have an older phone with Android 4.4 KitKat or earlier. This uses your Google account, and also requires the following steps which need to be executed.
- Input the wrong pattern into the lock screen until you see a You have made several unsuccessful attempts. Try again in 30 seconds
- Tap on Forgot Pattern and you’ll see a prompt to enter your Google account information.
- Type in your email address and password.
- You now have the option of resetting your lock screen pattern. Simply tap on the Sign in the tab, then go to the Screen Unlock settings and set a new lock screen pattern.
Unfortunately, Google removed this option in recent versions of Android.
Try Some Workaround Hacks
This method will not work out if you haven’t set up Smart Lock, don’t use a Samsung device or don’t have an old phone. If you are following in any of the above cases then, you have to take some extreme steps to regain it.
Keep in mind these essentially have you hacking into your phone, hence it is not guaranteed to work; also this could potentially mess up your phone if you are not careful. So, you should only try these steps if you have no other options left available other than doing it.
Delete the PIN File with ADB
Utilizing Android Debug Bridge (ADB) utility, you can easily access your phone’s file through your computer. Also, you can make use of this to delete the file that controls the phone’s lock screen security.
Anyway, this method will only work if:
- USB debugging is enabled on your phone. If you’ve never dived into the Developer Options panel, then you don’t have it enabled.
- You’ve allowed your computer to connect to your phone via ADB. We have a guide to using ADB if you’re not familiar.
- Your phone is not encrypted. Starting with Android 6.0 Marshmallow, Google requires all Android phones to ship encrypted. Thus, this won’t work for newer devices.
In case your phone meets these requirements, you can unlock your phone by following these steps:
- Connect your phone to your computer via USB cable.
- Open a Command Prompt or Terminal window to your ADB installation directory.
- Type in adb shell rm /data/system/gesture.key and hit Enter.
- Reboot your phone. Once you do, the secure lock screen should be gone.
- This is a temporary condition, so reset your PIN or pattern lock before rebooting again.
Crash the Lock Screen
Although, this method is feasible only for the encrypted devices running on Android 5.0 to 5.11; hence, it is only favorable for a small subset of phones, and it is worth a try if you happen to fit into this.
In order to crash the lock screen and gain access to your phone, follow the following steps:
- Tap the Emergency Call option on your lock screen.
- Use the dialer to input 10 asterisks.
- Double-tap to highlight this text and select Copy.
- Paste the selected characters next to the original copied characters.
- Keep repeating this process of adding more characters to the password space until double-tapping no longer highlights the characters.
- Open the camera shortcut and pull down the notification shade.
- Tap the settings icon, where you will be prompted to enter the password.
- Long-press the input field and choose the Paste Then repeat the process several times to copy and paste more characters.
- Eventually, the lock screen will crash and allow you to access your device.
5. Perform an Android Factory Reset
In case none of the above methods worked, then you will have to resort to a factory reset. Yes, definitely it will erase all the data on your phone. If you have signed into your Google account and backed up to it, then you can sign in to the same account after the reset is done and then you can restore it.
Now, as you have been locked out so you will need to use an alternative procedure to do the reset; the simplest way is to make use of Google’s Find My Device website. As long as you have enabled this feature on your cellphone, you can click on the Erase Device option on this page in order to reset it.
If you are not able to do so, then the only option left is to factory reset manually and in order to do so follow the simple steps provided below.
- Power your device off.
- After the screen goes completely black, press and hold the volume down and power buttons simultaneously to bring up Android’s bootloader menu. This button combination may be different depending on your phone.
- Press the volume down button twice to highlight the Recovery Mode option, and then press the power button to select it.
- Hold the power button and press the volume up button once to enter recovery mode.
- Use the volume buttons to go to the Wipe data/Factory Reset Proceed with the steps to perform a factory reset.
- Once the device reboots, walk through the setup again. You’ll be prompted log back into your Google account, which will restore any backed-up data.
Congratulations! You did it
Congratulation, now you can again sign in to your smartphone and use it as you want. Just make sure you remember your password this time, otherwise again you have to go through with the same process that you have done now.
In the severe case, you will lose your data and other essential materials. It is a suggestion to keep updated your smartphone and its data on Google account so in any case or causality, your data is safe and secure with you.