My institutional username and password doesn't work! ("Authentication Failed")

Modified on Fri, 30 Sep 2022 at 10:07 AM

For many institutions, BrowZine Mobile on iOS and Android is able to request the institutional username and password and store this in an encrypted fashion within BrowZine and auto log you in each time you attempt to use BrowZine while off-site.  This results in a seamless experience of being able to download articles without having to login to the institutional network for each session.

However, sometimes you might encounter an error message saying your username and password is incorrect and to update it in the settings tab.  Over several years, we have observed that there are five major reasons for this to happen, most of which the user can correct on their own.  We have presented these in the relative order of most frequently occurring to aid in troubleshooting:

1) When you first typed in the username and password it was done so incorrectly. 

This is usually just resulting from a simple typo likely from using the small keyboard on a mobile device.  This may appear confusing since you may have previously been able to download some full text!  This is a function of being either on-site on the institutional wi-fi (which frequently doesn't require logging in) or having downloaded open access articles which also do not require authentication.  The remedy and first course of action is to visit the SETTINGS tab and delete and retype your institutional username and password and then try the download again.

2) You are confusing your "username" with your email address or vice versa.  

In logging in remotely, some institutions require the user to include JUST their username, for example:


However, other institutions require the full email:

In most cases, BrowZine attempts to prompt the user whether we are looking for a username or an email, but it is a good idea to try to access content remotely from your library's website on a laptop/desktop computer and confirm which one you use when doing so.  This is the SAME username (or email!) that is required in BrowZine.  If you are using the wrong one, please update in the SETTINGS tab in BrowZine.

3) Your username/password was recently updated elsewhere at your institution, but not updated yet in BrowZine.

Whenever you update your password elsewhere, you need to indeed update it in BrowZine as well.  Since BrowZine remembers your username and password and is just working automatically for the you most of the time, it can be easy to forget that it is using these credentials that you updated with your institution.  Since some institutions REQUIRE you to refresh your password a few times a year, this is a common situation in BrowZine where the password needs to be updated.  Visit the SETTINGS tab to do so.

4) Your are mistaken about which username/password BrowZine is requesting.

While the username and password may be "good credentials" for other institutional services, they may not be the correct ones for remote access to your library which is what BrowZine is requesting.  To ensure you are using the right ones, please visit your library's website while off-site and attempt to access some full-text resources which should prompt you to login.  The username and password you use here are the same ones that BrowZine is requesting.  Visit the SETTINGS tab to update your username and password accordingly.

5) There is a genuine connection problem between BrowZine and your institution.

This is by far the most rare circumstance but this can happen!  If you have exhausted the above 4 other possibilities and are still having difficulty, please do not hesitate to contact us and let us know that you saw this help guide but are still having difficulties.  You can reach us at