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Treasury Direct New Login Process: No More Passcards!

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Treasury DirectTreasury Direct is the website setup by the Treasury Department for managing electronic bonds. I use it whenever I go to buy savings bonds, such as Series I Bonds, but I hate logging in. You have to enter in your username, then your password, then three letter/numbers off this arcane passcard. It’s just one step but looking on this card just seems so silly.

I understand why they have it. You can authenticate someone by something they have, something they know, and something they are (or a combination). The something they have is that passcard (something they know is a password and something they are is biometrics) and it adds an additional layer of security. If you’ve seen those RSA keys where it displays a number that changes every fifteen minutes, that’s a beefed up version of a passcard.

Well, Treasury Direct is becoming friendlier (albeit less secure) and they’ll doing away with the passcard. I’m thrilled.

Logging In For The First Time (Again)

Whenever you log in, it will try to recognize your computer. If it can’t, they’ll email you a one-time passcode that is valid for two hours. When I did it the first time, the email appeared in seconds. You copy and paste that into the field, click “Remember This Computer” if you want to, and then proceed.

From there, you’ll see the familiar “keyboard” you always entered your password. Once you key that in, you’ll be asked to pick a “personalized” image from a panel of images and enter in a caption (only letters and numbers). After that, you have the option of editing your information (I went to change an email), but otherwise you get pushed to the same first page you’re probably familiar with.

One thing you’ll notice is that you no longer need the passcard!

The next time you login, you’ll see your image, your caption, and the keyboard to enter in your password. After you do that, you’re in!

It’s one less step and while I didn’t log in all the time, I like it a lot.

{ 10 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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10 Responses to “Treasury Direct New Login Process: No More Passcards!”

  1. eric says:

    About time! Definitely the most tedious sign in process I had to go through. Glad it’s more streamlined.

  2. Audrain H. Easley says:

    This is sorry system. I can no longer access my account. I have been locked out. I have followed all of their directions. I have sent emails and phone calls to no avail. I received a form on line to fill out to access my account. I did so and received a message that they could’nt match the info that I provided. It said to review and try again. I did so two more times and then was locked out. The info that I provided was correct. I looks like my account has been hijacked. I have never had any problems in the past. My next step is to contact my Congressman to investigate this mess.

  3. Paul Davis says:

    If the EMail address they have is incorrect or outdated, there is evidently no way to access your account EVER – have been trying to get help from them but doesn’t seem there is any intelligent life at TreasuryDirect

    • Will Damico says:


      I seem to be having the exact same issue. The temporary passcode never arrives. I don’t think I ever even set up an email account in my profile. It has been more than two weeks since I contacted them for assistance with narry a peep.

      • Veda Ria says:

        Same here. There is no response to the voicemail left with them and the email response is very poor if they reply at all. And then they would change the email address on the account by themselves. It is pretty poor service.

  4. Mary Ann Murray says:

    My temporary passcode never arrives.
    There is no way to sign on without it
    and no way to see the Email that is associated with the account.
    I am keeping the remainder of my savings bonds in paper form as I do not know what else to do

  5. mella cos says:

    I am so upset have difficult buying an I bond,.

    I do so often for my grandchildren but will not continue, much too many steps…….

  6. Roy Beard says:

    I too cannot get a reply from Treasury Direct.
    My email account has changed and I cannot get a one time pass code from them. I can understand, but they do not return phone messages or emails!

    Very concerning! Have I lost my money???

    I know the US is in debt but I thought they have not filed for bankruptcy yet!

  7. C. Hailey says:

    I’ve lost/forgotten my password and username, and judging from the above comments will never be able to access my money. I plan to cancel my savings bond through work program. Savings bonds used to be very simple. I suspect that they have lost hundreds of thousands of savings bond buyers and probably millions of dollars due to their poor service and overly complicated login system. Our government at work.

  8. Sadie says:

    It is frightening to have money tied up in Savings Bonds & be unable to access. That would be like walking into a bank & if one did not know their account #, then would have to leave & return later with the #. Fortunately there would be a paper bank statement at home!Though I understand need for security on-line.

    But what if I needed to request monies today & site is inaccessible because of misplaced PIN??

    Treasury Direct is inconvenient, not user friendly for grandparents, who do not use the internet.

    Though overall, I have found communication to be good with these folks. I will continue to use as offers best interest rates anywhere.

    Love having access to the Wizard for tracking growth of investment.

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