Have you ever inadvertently locked yourself out of Twitter because of too many simultaneous logins? Perhaps one of your Twitter clients like TweetDeck or Seesmic is having some issues and repeatedly trying to log you in and out of your account. Or perhaps your internet connection is flakey and you are dropping connections causing your logins to happen over and over. If Twitter detects a lot of logins over a short period of time, you may get a screen that says this:
The article that is referenced in the screenshot above is this one within the Twitter Troubleshooting section. In that page, it is stated that “when your account is locked, you will not be able to log in-even with the correct password.” And, it will remain locked for about 60 minutes.
This is actually NOT ENTIRELY CORRECT (and unless Twitter fixes this little hole, you “should” be able to immediately login again).
Here is what you can do to work around this block:
- From a computer, change the URL of Twitter FROM: http://www.twitter.com TO: http://m.twitter.com (which is the mobile site – NOTE: you might get a security alert about a certificate not being valid)
- Try logging in using the mobile version of the Twitter site (see above: http://m.twitter.com) with your usual login and password. (Note: you can also try http://mobile.twitter.com)
- If you can log in using that mobile site, simply remove the “m” from the URL (making it http://twitter.com) and you should be good to go and already logged in! If you still can’t login, read on for more information.
HOWEVER…this does NOT always work. As I wanted to test this out before posting this article, I just went through the exercise of trying to login to my Twitter account but using the wrong password over and over. At one point, I was presented with a reCaptcha form under my login but I kept trying to purposefully enter in an incorrect login. Eventually, I WAS able to lock out my account. I then tried the trick I used above and it actually DIDN’T WORK. So, I have to fully state that this trick above is not 100% effective.
BUT…don’t give up! It seems that the block or lockout is only specific to the IP address where you are trying to come from. I tried logging in via my iPhone and was successful. Also, I tried from a computer that has a different IP address than my current one (e.g., on a completely different network – my home PC vs. my work PC) and I was able to successfully log in there as well. It seems that when blocking, Twitter remembers the IP address of the source of repeated login attempts and then just blocks that IP address. So, if you are on a DSL modem, for example, there is a good chance that if you simply power-cycle the modem, you will get a new IP address and be able to log back into Twitter.
The first time I was locked out, the 3 steps above worked fine, but I guess since I started really hammering on the login with invalid attempts, it eventually blocked my IP address and my trick above wouldn’t work.
So, the bottom line, if you find yourself locked out, try the 3 steps above. If you are still locked out, try from your cell phone or a computer on a completely different network. If you are still locked out, your account may have been compromised or something else is going on. Wait 60 minutes and then try again. Remember to close any 3rd Party Twitter clients you may have running. If after 60 minutes of waiting and you are still locked out, you probably should contact Twitter for more help.
I have only tested this a little bit so I would love to get some feedback on if this really works well or not. Please leave a comment to let me know if it did or not, and the steps you took to try it (successful or not).
HTD say: While this isn’t proven to work 100% of the time, it’s worth an attempt!