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Locked out of email

Joining in

I normally use outlook 2016 on my desktop, and apple mail on my iphone, to access my emails. I also use the web client via My Virgin Media when I am away from home.

Last Friday I sent an email from outlook which seems to have been sent successfully but the subsequent get for new emails  failed with an error message. I tried the web client but was told my Virgin Media account was currently unavailable because the account was locked. I followed the steps to unlock the account having first signed in to My Virgin Media. Before I could change the password I was prompted to set a new email address for use as my login id by My Virgin Media. I entered my Hotmail email address as prompted and then waited for the promised email to arrive, which it did an hour later. When I followed the link it told me that the link had expired. I went back to My Virgin Media and tried again but this time with a gmail account I had set up especially. This time I received the ‘verify your email address’ email and clicked on the link. I received a subsequent message in gmail with a verification code which I entered and finally received a success message.

Then I was prompted to log off and sign back in but this I could not do. No email and password combination would work. I tried the ‘forgot password’ option to do a reset and entered my new gmail  address but received the unhelpful Ooops something went wrong message with a please try again later. I get the same result every time I try.

I spoke to customer support on 0345 454 1111 and was passed from pillar to post with no-one able to help because  I do not have any VM products. The problem is that I have never been a Virgin Media customer. I am a legacy customer from the days of modems and dialup and have made constant use of my email account for the past 30 odd years. I do have an account number for My virgin Media along with the Area Reference but the support people I have spoken to cannot access it and can’t help. I was eventually passed to someone in the Telecoms team who said that they could indeed see that I have an active account but couldn’t do anything to help. However, they promised to raise a ticket on my behalf. I gave my mobile number as a contact but have not received a ticket number and as I can’t log in I can’t see if there is a ticket active against my account.

I use my email for everything. It is a huge job for me to now switch everything to a new email address with another provider and I am now getting highly stressed. I guess I may have to consider a move because from what I have seen on the forum, support for may be removed completely although I have not received any notification of this from Virgin.

I still need to get hold of all my recent emails and set up a forward to my gmail address for any further emails that get sent to me. Can anyone suggest an approach please? The phone number I was given seems to go to a 3rd party who acts for VM. Does anyone know if there is a way to contact the teams that look after the email side of things? There must be a way that I can get in to my emails without having VM broadband and I am sure there will be others in the same position as me.


Alessandro Volta

Bit confused by your post as you mention that you do not have any VM products and have never been a VM customer but you also mention having an account number and area reference number so not sure how those two things can both be true (or are those from your dialup days?).

You need to have a current VM broadband subscription to use VM email.

VM has been clearing out legacy email accounts (such as and deleting them if they are not associated with a current VM broadband subscription.

Sometimes VM grants temporary access to old accounts for a rescue mission to recover data but that tends to be for customers who have recently left.

A VM forum team member should reply here within a few days to advise what help they can give but it all tends to be at VM's discretion if you are not a VM customer.

Hi thanks for the update.

I believe I was allocated the Virgin Media account number years ago when I was contacted to say that as a previous customer I could continue to use that email address via My Virgin Media. I cannot subscribe to Virgin Media products because they are no available at our address. I think that if Virgin Media are going cut loose the legacy email accounts the least they could is to give adequate warning. 

I will keep an eye out for any reply from a VM forum team member.

Alessandro Volta

If you can look back to that previous contact I think you will find the offer was that you could continue with the email address if you joined Virginmedia.


- jpeg1
My name is NOT Alessandro. That's just a tag Virginmedia sticks on some contributors. Please ignore it.

The email I referred to was many years ago and probably more than 10 at that. I recall no caveats. I have effectively been with Virginmedia all this time because I had an account I could log into, until Friday.

Alessandro Volta

If you have a current broadband account with Virginmedia and the email account is attached to it, then your email should still be available.  If it isn't, then it will be what VM call an orphan.  It's explained here.

- jpeg1
My name is NOT Alessandro. That's just a tag Virginmedia sticks on some contributors. Please ignore it.

Thanks jpeg1, while it's not what I wanted to hear it does look like I fall into the orphan email account category.

Hopefully someone at VM will take pity on reading this and give me a little extra time to sort myself out. After years of using as my email address I have lots of shopping, utility, financial etc. accounts where it is my user id. I am slowly working through them but of course I can't see if anyway has emailed me since last Friday.

Appreciate your input though


Alessandro Volta

I don't suppose it will be much of a consolation, but you are not the only one to have been caught out by this. Many other previous customers have lost emails. 

- jpeg1
My name is NOT Alessandro. That's just a tag Virginmedia sticks on some contributors. Please ignore it.

Hi @theodot 👋 Thank you for your posts and welcome to the Virgin Media Community 😀

We're sorry to hear about the problem you're having 😔

In order to look into this for you further, we'll send you a private message on here. Look out for the envelope in the top right-hand corner.

If you're on a portable device with a smaller screen, click on the icon in the top right-hand corner and select "messages" from the additional menu options.

We can't guarantee we'll be able to unlock the e-mail account, but we'll do our best.

Thank you for your support @goslow and @jpeg1 👍