The difference between the Mailbox Password and Login Password.

One of the first things you will notice when logging into ProtonMail, is you are required to have two passwords. While having two passwords increases the security of your account, each of your ProtonMail passwords have their own unique purpose.

The Login Password is used as the first line of defense to ensure no intruders are allowed into your account. This password is stored on ProtonMail servers and allows ProtonMail to confirm your identity.

The Mailbox Password allows you to read your encrypted messages. It is the key that allows you to encrypt and decrypt messages sent to and from your ProtonMail account, ensuring that you are the only one who can read your messages, even if they end up in the wrong hands. This password is not stored on ProtonMail’s servers. It is decrypted within your browser every time you login.

You can read more about Encryption here.

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  1. Jon

    Small typo: “comfirm” instead of confirm.
    Also, am I reading this right? Your encryption password is gathered by your browser once logged in, and not stored on the server. The Login password is stored on the server. Doesn’t that defeat the purpose? If someone gets into the server and gets user login passwords, then they also get the encryption keys.

  2. Amanda

    That’s actually quite interesting. If people have lost/forgotten has no access to mailbox then wouldn’t it be possible for proton to login and remove it for customers? They can use the recovery email etc for verification purposes? I’m far from a tech genius so that’s just common sense, I’m sure in the tech world their is rational explanation?

  3. hannak

    thank you for your prompt reply but I do not know if it is necessary I created this password or I actually find it? to make it work?
    sorry for inconvenience
    Best regards

  4. sandy

    They have several typographical errors on their websites

  5. Raju Talukder

    I cannot use my protonMail account please help me.

    Raju Talukder
    My email

  6. Tom

    Can my logon password be saved in a Password Manager (e.g. LastPass)?

  7. Tom

    Can my logon password be stored on a Password Manager on my laptop?

  8. skoville

    Is is possible to restart sign up without getting the usual “That password is taken”?

  9. ProtonMail Support

    Once an account is created, it can’t be reset or deleted and recreated. If you need assistance you can contact us at or via the Report bug button.

  10. Rodger

    I have used what I believed was my username (protonmail email address) but it does not seem to work. When I requested my username sent to my email address I set up. It never shows up. So I am now locked out of my account.

  11. ProtonMail Support

    Can you please use the Report Bug button or send us an email on with more information about the issue you are experiencing?

  12. Vladimir Romanov

    Forgot my password but that’s not all, I also do not remember which e-mail I used for recovery – tried every one of them with no success. Is there any way to reset password?
    Username – vg.romanov

  13. ProtonMail Support

    Can you please use the report bug button or contact us at ?

  14. Jepps

    I have problem signing into my email please i need new password as i am not able to access my box.
    It seem some one hack into my account and i need a new password , my email is :

  15. ProtonMail Support

    Please contacts us at

  16. Brian

    For First time user. How does Myself get in my email when Accidentally Deleted Password sheet.? and has everything they have sign up with Protonmail.. I see there is no Reset password at all.. I will buy the Protonmail and ProtonVPN as long i can have my access email. I check my email everyday .. Please i want to have an

  17. ProtonMail Support

    You can reset your password at as long as you have a recovery address set. You can always contact our support team at or using the support form at for assistance as well.

  18. Josep-Maria Figuera Gràcia

    I am sorry if my comment (my question, really) does not correspond to this section. I use «Blue Mail» for the administration of three mail accounts (1 gmail, 1aol, 1 microsoft) in my smartphone. I would like to add to Blue Mail my account of Protonmail, but I can not. Blue Mail asks me for the IMAP or the EXCHANGE or the POP3 of Protonmail and I do not know the answer.

  19. ProtonMail Support

    ProtonMail cannot be set up in a third party app on iOS or Android. Please use our dedicated iOS and Android apps.

  20. Amanda

    I had my iPhone Protonmail app which I know is a security risk but I never logged out. I have 2 password settings but can’t understand why I went to bed and the next day as the only person with the phone the app disappeared. Hense my inability to get an email which was extremely important if I reset and download another app.
    Please advice

  21. ProtonMail Support

    If you need any assistance please contact our support team at or using the support form at

  22. Amanda

    I do have another proton account I can access?

  23. Jake

    I can’t access my account even if I tried all the password that I know

  24. ProtonMail Support

    Please contact our support team at or using the support form at

  25. Alex

    when logging in to proton mail my email shows up as well as the password. How do i delete the password from showing up and allowing me to enter every time i use the pc. If someone steals my laptop, they will have access. should be simple fix?

  26. ProtonMail Support

    Please check your browser documentation for removing saved logins/passwords.

  27. Kay Bellile

    I am unable to forward an e-mail account from my existing account or sign on to my proton account. I only set up one password. I tried two different browsers explorer and chrome and cleared my cache.

  28. ProtonMail Support

    Please contact our support team at or using the support form at

  29. Sally campbell

    Do I have an account?

  30. ProtonMail Support

    Please contact our support team at or using the support form at

  31. King

    I made a new account.
    And now try to login and get decrypt mailbox…
    I write my password but its not correct..
    What is mailbox password for something?

  32. ProtonMail Support

    You can read about the differences between the login and mailbox password when using two password mode here:

  33. Tagel

    I can not open my email .by username (hidden).

  34. Proton Editor

    If you are having trouble signing up for a new account, please contact our support team at or using the support form at


    Dear Support,
    Good Day!

    I am not able to reset my password. Kindly help. Thank you

  36. ProtonMail Support

    Please contact our support team at or using the support form at

  37. mercy

    failing to log in

  38. ProtonMail Support

    If you need any assistance, please contact our support team at or using the support form at

  39. Anonymous

    Tengo problemas con Usuario o Contraseña.
    Por favor, ayuda.

  40. ProtonMail Support

    Please contact our support team at,, via the report bug button or using the support form at

  41. Dan – Eugen CIOARA

    I can not go in – it looks like someone changed my pass!
    I’m waiting for your help
    Dan – Eugen CIOARA
    E: d******* and

  42. ProtonMail Support

    Please contact our support team at

  43. Nat

    Can I create different mailbox passwords for every emails I’ve sent?

  44. ProtonMail Support

    No, when using two-password mode, the mailbox password is used to decrypt all your messages. If you meant when sending encrypted messages to non-ProtonMail users, you can set a different password for each message.

  45. Elias A.

    Hello, I have error trying to re-open my email account, I do not remember the password or the recovery of mail?

  46. ProtonMail Support

    Please contact our support team using the support form at

  47. Elias A.

    Thank you, I hope to recover my account!

  48. Anonymous

    Does this mean that login passwords are stored in the server as plain text? Or I am miss reading it and it means that the mailbox passwords is only used to decrypt the private key?

  49. ProtonMail Support

    Passwords are stored as hashes, not in plaintext. An explanation can be found here:

  50. Anonymous

    I can’t comment.

  51. Anonymous

    Is it that our login passwords are stored in ProtonMail servers in their raw forms?

    PS: I am of the opinion that they are rather stored in the form of their encrypted versions.

  52. ProtonMail Support

    Passwords are stored as encrypted hashes, never as cleartext.

  53. Gregory Retzlaff

    So it looks like there are more security issues at protonmail than the two I have already come across, before I got too scared and stopped looking.

  54. ProtonMail Support

    Please report potential security issues to

  55. Anon

    I find this suspicious:

    1) When I initially created my account, I was forced to always supply a second password. I assumed this was for my private key.
    2) I never actually possessed my private key.
    3) Without having ever configured this, I was magically able to log in with just my username and password – and read my “encrypted” messages without supplying a mailbox password. Since then this has been the default behavior.
    4) You say that not even ProtonMail can read our emails. How did you magically grab my encrypted messages, without my mailbox password, so they could be read without my mailbox password?
    5) Did I ever actually have a private key?
    6) Are private keys stored on YOUR servers? Doesn’t that defeat the purpose?
    7) Are you following along with how shady this all looks?

  56. ProtonMail Support

    1. Older accounts were in two-password mode by default. Since the introduction of one password mode, the login password also doubles as the mailbox/private key password. If you have reset your password after the introduction of one password mode, the account is automatically switched to one password mode and you don’t need to use a second password to log in.
    2. Please see
    3, 4. See 1.
    5, 6. See 2.

  57. Brennan West

    I know my password to log in but I lost my two factor authentication, is there anyway to either recover the account or delete it and start fresh?

  58. ProtonMail Support

    Please open a support ticket at

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