Primary Email Address Option for Sign-in and NSF Account Password Recovery Begins September 28,2020

Previously, in March 2018, the National Science Foundation (NSF) introduced a new centralized account registration process in for the research community that provides each user with a single profile and unique identifier (i.e., NSF ID) for signing in to FastLane and for proposal and award activities and the ability for each user to manage their own profile.

Effective September 28, 2020, NSF will enhance the research community sign-in process by providing the option to use an individual’s primary email address to sign in to and for NSF account password recovery.  Users will still be able to sign in to with their NSF ID as they do currently or with their organization-issued credentials if the organization participates in the InCommon Federation.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Effective September 28, 2020, the Sign-in page will include three sign-in options:
    • Primary email address + password (new option)
    • NSF ID + password (existing option)
    • Organization-issued Credentials (InCommon Federation participating organizations only) (existing option)
  • Also effective September 28, 2020, users will be able to enter either their primary email address or their NSF ID for NSF account password recovery.
  • The user’s primary email address is the one they registered with on, and this email address is displayed on their My Profile page.
  • This change is intended to make it easier for users to remember their sign-in information, as well as to align with the industry standards for sign-in using an email address.

Account Management Resources

Additional information about NSF accounts and the primary email address is available on the About Account Management page.  An updated Account Management Guide and updated Frequently Asked Questions will be available on the About Account Management page on September 28, 2020.

Questions? If you have IT system-related questions, please contact the NSF Help Desk at 1-800-381-1532 (7:00 AM – 9:00 PM ET; Monday – Friday except federal holidays) or via

Policy-related questions should be directed to

Original post by NSF  9/21/2020