Federal Student Aid (FSA) announced last week that starting March 31, 2019, it will be implementing changes to the FSA ID process. The FSA ID currently provides students and families access to a multitude of Department of Education (ED) related websites. Most notably, an FSA ID is needed for students and families to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), to access National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS), and to complete Direct Loan Entrance Counseling and the Master Promissory Note on StudentLoans.gov.
Currently, students or their parents must enter the username attached to their FSA ID to log into their account. FSA will improve upon this process by allowing the user to register their phone number to their account, and use that number in the place of a username. Once a student or parent registers their phone number, they can use it to reset their password, unlock their FSA ID account, or retrieve their username.
Other improvements include removing the requirement for passwords to be changed every 18 months, removing the requirement to include special characters in passwords, lockout warnings when an incorrect password has been used a certain number of times, and warnings when email addresses that may have access expiration dates associated with them (e.g. .edu, .k12, etc) are used as the account’s primary email address.
NASFAA and others had raised concerns in the past over the complexity of the FSA ID process, and the issues Financial Aid Administrators and the students they serve were experiencing, and commend FSA for implementing these changes.
Publication Date: 3/26/2019