Federal retirees will soon have a new login process to contend with when they visit the OPM Retirement Services Online website to check their annuity accounts online.
Starting May 26, 2022, federal retirees will notice a new process for signing into the website. The login process will now be managed through the federal government’s Login.gov website and will require you to create a new username and password at login.gov if you do not currently have one.
According to the Office of Personnel Management, the change is being made to better protect the personal information of federal retirees who use the website.
What is Login.gov?
The Login.gov website states that it is a service to “Use one account for secure, private access to participating government agencies.” It further adds:
Login.gov is a secure sign in service used by the public to sign in to participating government agencies. Participating agencies will ask you to create a Login.gov account to securely access your information on their website or application.
You can use the same username and password to access any agency that partners with Login.gov. This streamlines your process and eliminates the need to remember multiple usernames and passwords.
Think of it as the government’s comparable solution to a single sign on process similar to what you would use if you log into a website using your Google or Twitter account instead of creating a new, separate username and password for that particular website. The idea is to simplify the process by having one less account to manage and enhancing security since your email, password, etc. have already been established and verified by the controlling website (Google or Twitter in this example).
What Do Federal Retirees Have to Do?
According to an announcement issued by OPM, starting May 26, 2022, the new login process will go into effect. It states:
Beginning on and after May 26th, 2022, you will notice a new process for signing into Services Online to better protect your personal information. To log in, you will be prompted to create a new username and password with login.gov. After that, whenever you log in to the [OPM Retirement] Services Online site, you will use the login.gov username and password, as well as a special code to authenticate your identity and protect your account. You will no longer be able to log in using a claim number and password.
OPM has also provided a detailed guide on how to create a new username and password with Login.gov.
The new process involves creating an account, verifying your email address, creating a password that is at least 12 characters long, securing your account by confirming a mobile number (although other options are available, such as using a security key or your government employee ID), and then linking the new Login.gov account to your account/profile with OPM Retirement Services Online which requires entering your claim number and current password with that website.
Federal retirees who already have a Login.gov account will not need to create another new account and can instead just use their existing Login.gov account to link to the OPM Retirement Services Online website.
Each individual needs his or her own Login.gov account; accounts cannot be shared.
OPM said that nothing will happen to the data stored in your Services Online account; only the login process is changing.
Individuals needing assistance can check the Login.gov help center.
Which Federal Agencies Use Login.gov?
According to login.gov, some of the agencies or services already using this service are USAJobs, TSA PreCheck, and the Small Business Administration. No doubt more and more federal agencies will be getting added in the future too.