Your PennKey is your 3-8 character University electronic ID, used to access many of the University’s resources. It will be the basis of your email account. Please note that once selected, it cannot be changed except under specific circumstances.

First you must obtain a PennKey set-up code, faculty and staff, will receive one as part of their onboarding process while students will receive theirs in by email or regular mail.

Once you have a PennKey set-up code, follow the steps below to register your PennKey:

  1. Log in to the PennKey registration application that will ask for the setup code and the last four digits of your Social Security Number (SSN) and Date of Birth. For those who don’t have a SSN, you would use the last four digits of your 9-digit identifier (ID) received from the University. Students typically receive this identifier from their admitting program office, while faculty and staff receive it from their business administrator.
  2. Follow the prompts to register your PennKey and password.
  3. Enroll in Challenge-Response so you can initiate the password reset process online should you forget your password.
  4. Test your new PennKey and password.

After creating your PennKey, you will be required to enroll in Two-Step Verification.

Protecting Your Pennkey

It is essential that you keep your password secure to prevent others from accessing your personal information.

Never share your PennKey password. Your data and the systems you access could be compromised due to their neglect or intent though you are still responsible for anything done in your name.

Don’t auto save your password on programs or websites. Anyone else who uses your computer could then access your information.

Don’t use the same password for public websites (e.g., online bookstores, airlines, etc.) that you use with your PennKey. Rather, choose two passwords: your public password for use at public web sites and your private password for sensitive Penn systems.

Beware of anyone claiming to need your password; no Penn system administrator will ever ask you for your password.

Change your PennKey password immediately if you feel it has been compromised and report the incident to SP2 Information Services, who can work with our Office of Information Security.

Two-Step Verification

Two-Step Verification provides an added layer of protection when accessing PennKey-protected web sites and applications. After you log in with your PennKey and password, you’ll use a device in your possession to verify your identity. With Two-Step, your data is protected, even if your PennKey password is compromised.

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