Encryption: BitLocker Recovery (Personal Device)


BitLocker is the Windows encryption technology that protects your data from unauthorized access by encrypting your drive and requiring one or more factors of authentication before it will unlock it.

Windows will require a BitLocker recovery key when it detects a possible unauthorized attempt to access the data. BitLocker recovery key is a unique 48-digit numerical password that can be used to unlock your system if BitLocker is otherwise unable to confirm for certain that the attempt to access the system drive is authorized.


Important Points and Resources Regarding Recovery Options

  • Reference Microsoft Support articleFinding your BitLocker recovery key in Windows
  • From the Microsoft Support article:
    "In your Microsoft account: Sign in to your Microsoft account on another device to find your recovery key. This is the most likely place to find your recovery key"
  • From the Microsoft Support article:
    "If you are unable to locate the BitLocker recovery key and can't revert any configuration change that might have caused it to be required, you’ll need to reset your device using one of the Windows recovery options. Resetting your device will remove all of your files."
  • The OIT Help Desk will not be able to assist directly with the process of resetting your device (reinstalling your Windows Operating System (OS)), and instead will recommend taking your computer to a local computer repair shop for assistance. See Mt. Pleasant Area Personal Computer Repair Options if you are located on or near the main CMU campus
  • In some rare circumstances, the OIT Help Desk may be able to provide a lost BitLocker recovery key but it's not guaranteed.


Article ID: 36804
Thu 9/8/22 9:15 AM
Thu 3/9/23 12:34 PM