Home Android How to Fix Samsung Galaxy “Disabled By Administrator” Error

How to Fix Samsung Galaxy “Disabled By Administrator” Error

Lately multiple reports have surfaced that many Android smartphones and tablet owners are running into an error that lists “Disabled by Administrator, encryption policy, or credential storage” while trying to change settings, switch their Samsung Galaxy lockscreen back to a swipe method, and other problems. Below we’ll explain how to quickly fix this for most users.

Android smartphones and tablet have a lot of different security measures in place, and apps do too. Many users end up enabling some administrator policy or encryption at some point, and later realize they can’t access or change certain settings and options on their phone.

Read: 8 Common Galaxy Note 5 Problems & Fixes

I recently ran into the “disabled by administrator” error on the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 while trying to disable my fingerprint lockscreen security, and go back to a regular swipe to unlock, or pin. Below is a quick fix to solve this problem for Samsung Galaxy users, or any Android smartphone or tablet.

Galaxy-error

Heading into settings on the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 and other phones, some users may notice that all lockscreen and security options are disabled, and greyed out. Rather than being able to change these settings, an error message in grey pops up instead that reads, “Disabled by Administrator, encryption policy, or credential storage”.

Once this happens users aren’t able to change their lockscreen security from a pattern to a pincode, use a fingerprint, or go from a fingerprint lockscreen security measure back to something else. With the Jelly Bean update Google added encryption to Android, and ever since this has been an occasional problem for Samsung Galaxy owners.

Those wanting to simply switch back to swipe to unlock on their phone, on Samsung devices just select “None” under the lockscreen settings, which defaults to the swipe method. If you have the problem mentioned here, read on for more details.

If you’re facing the dreaded “Disabled by Administrator, encryption policy, or credential storage” error on your Samsung Galaxy S6, Note 5, or other devices, here’s how to quickly fix it and get access to all of your settings and lockscreen options.

Instructions

This typically happens if your smartphone or tablet is encrypted, which protects files or certain aspects of the device. Those using Samsung Pay, Android Pay, Outlook or some other apps may find that this error appears, and they’re unable to change certain settings. Here’s how to fix it.

Users will need to head into the settings menu on their Samsung Galaxy or other smartphone and tablet and clear the credentials. Once this is done, these options will no longer be greyed out. Below are some screenshots for help, as well as step-by-step instructions.

  1. Navigate to “Settings”
  2. Personal Column and select “Lockscreen and security”
  3. Then select “Other security settings” or “More”
  4. Scroll down to Credential storage and select “Clear credentials”
  5. Now Change the lockscreen and other settings options

Galaxy-credentials

Once selected the “Clear credentials” option will be greyed out, everything will be cleared, and users will have access to all settings again. If it’s already greyed out, there’s another problem and we’d suggest heading to a few forums for help.

For whatever reason changes to the credentials because of Samsung Pay, some secure 3rd party apps, or switching to something like a fingerprint for lockscreen security appears to disable certain options or settings from being changed. All users need to do is follow the steps above and clear the credentials, and it should fix this error message.

It’s worth noting that this will not erase fingerprints that have been saved to a device like the Galaxy S6 or Galaxy Note 5, or delete patterns, pins, or passwords. Users will then be able to select the lockscreen method of choice, and continue using their phone.

This is an odd error that we’ve been getting asked and more and more, so give the steps above a try and regain control of your Samsung Galaxy smartphone, or other Android devices.

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60 Comments

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    Reply

  2. Lee Land (@rhema4lite)

    01/31/2016 at 5:13 pm

    Thanks for your help on this

    Reply

  3. Tilly

    02/01/2016 at 4:51 am

    Thanks for your help.

    Reply

  4. Tim

    02/12/2016 at 3:16 am

    Hi everyone. Thank you for this great advice. I have been trying to find the answer to this question for a long time now. Your answer helped me so much as I needed to change my security from pattern to pin. I was watching TV one day and I caught a glimpse of my pad out of the corner of my eye. The light was shining on it at just the right angle. I noticed that you could see my pattern very clearly. So if you wish to use the “pattern” security make sure to clean your pad and phone after you are done other wise some one can actually see and use the pattern that was left behind from the oils or dirt from your fingers. Some one may have come across this bad security flaw but I have not heard of this at all. Keep safe and make sure to clean your screens before walking away from you devices.
    Always practice safe browsing:{)
    Tim

    Reply

  5. Parul

    03/12/2016 at 6:21 am

    Hi guys..clear credentials is also greyed out..and I cannot switch back to fingerprint. .any suggestions?

    Reply

    • Kelvin

      03/24/2016 at 8:22 pm

      check whether u can change the lock screen method on Setting>Lock Screen>Screen Lock… i got mine unlock there….

      Reply

  6. Aranea

    03/13/2016 at 3:59 pm

    It worked! Thanks

    Reply

  7. Viki

    03/23/2016 at 1:55 pm

    Thanks it worked.

    Reply

  8. Amanda

    04/03/2016 at 1:40 pm

    This was just a temporary fix for me. Every single time I change any settings on my phone it switches back to the credentials and I have to clear it out once more. This all began when I downloaded the outlook app, but have since uninstalled it and wiped its admin rights. I’m pretty sure its certificate is still on my phone but I have no idea what it’s named. Any help?

    Reply

  9. Allison R

    04/05/2016 at 6:55 am

    Nothing I’ve tried has worked for me, very frustrating!

    Reply

  10. tulani

    04/06/2016 at 12:58 am

    Can I get help my sumsung s3 is having problem.is showing that an error has been occur when I open some sight and is showing that when I open my internet

    Reply

  11. matt

    04/07/2016 at 5:58 pm

    My phone wont let me access the clear credentials button, its just grey? What to do now

    Reply

    • DEE D SANTOS

      06/27/2017 at 8:15 am

      Got it at last! Go settings, lockscreen&security,other security settings, device admin then turn off all buttons under here. Voila!

      Reply

  12. Nono

    04/11/2016 at 10:47 am

    Perfect, thanks

    Reply

  13. Charming

    04/14/2016 at 3:31 pm

    Thanks a lot. This was very helpful. I was scared to clear all the certificates as I didn’t know what might go wrong.

    Reply

  14. jose g gutierrez

    04/20/2016 at 7:59 pm

    it worked, thanks so much for the info

    Reply

  15. Heather

    04/29/2016 at 11:13 am

    I can’t thank you enough. I’ve been trying to fix this all week.

    Reply

  16. Robin

    04/30/2016 at 9:40 am

    I am not able to change the lock screen and security settings in my s6 edge + after i updated to marshmallow 6.0.1. It asks for fingerprint or backup password.
    I tried all above methods and credentials is already greyed.
    Plzz help.??

    Reply

  17. Ami

    05/04/2016 at 10:57 am

    Thank you for your help! I was locked out of my phone (samsung S6) and was so frustated. It could not scan my finger print so I unlocked the device by findmymobile. I changed to pattern but then I got only emergency call on my screen. I followed your instruction to clear credentials and viola! it is back to swipe again. Eventho it’s kind of uncomfortable having my device unprotected but it’s better than locked out of your own phone. Hopefully samsung will work on this issue.

    Reply

  18. Kelly Webster

    05/11/2016 at 1:52 pm

    I don’t have an “OTHER” option. What now?

    Reply

  19. Arlethia Washington

    05/17/2016 at 8:10 am

    Thank you. This was very helpful. I’m learning to move more efficiently around my tablet. I appreciate your knowledge.

    Reply

  20. Andy

    05/23/2016 at 4:48 pm

    thanks, it works on my samsung galaxy J5.

    Reply

  21. hary

    05/28/2016 at 10:14 am

    My phone still shows grey clear crendals

    Reply

  22. skeeki

    05/31/2016 at 2:17 pm

    THANKS A MILLION! HELPED ME ALOT! I TOO WAS SCARED TO CLEAR CREDENTIALS AS I THOUGHT WOULD REMOVE OR CHANGE OTHER ITEMS! THANKS AGAIN! VERY HELPFUL!

    Reply

  23. Diana

    06/03/2016 at 8:08 pm

    Thanks a lot it works on my SAMSUNG J5

    Reply

  24. Selma

    06/11/2016 at 11:58 am

    Thank you so much guys it worked on my GALAXY S5

    Reply

  25. Donna Roberts

    06/12/2016 at 6:38 am

    What do you do when clear creditionals is grayed out???

    Reply

  26. subhan

    06/14/2016 at 4:13 pm

    great its work like a charm on my samsung galaxy s2

    Reply

  27. Wajid ahmed

    06/30/2016 at 7:05 pm

    It really work thank u

    Reply

  28. Tommy Dusang

    07/01/2016 at 9:40 pm

    WOW! I can’t thank you enough! You saved the day (my pulse is back to normal). I thought I really messed up my S6. God bless you!

    Reply

  29. Rhonda L Benoit

    07/03/2016 at 8:21 am

    Thanks, it worked on my alpha but I had to go to the blue security icon to get to the “clear credentials”, hope this helps.

    Reply

  30. Kathy

    07/05/2016 at 9:52 pm

    omgosh! thank you so much!!! i was unable to change it back to “none” thanks!

    Reply

  31. Janel Harlan

    07/21/2016 at 3:42 am

    OMG!!! Thank you!!!

    Reply

  32. Donna

    09/04/2016 at 10:55 am

    Can someone please help me to solve this problem. I just bought the S4 refurbished. It works fine but I can’t choose my lock screen method as none of the above screen instructions work. All of the lock screen options are greyed out, as is the clear credentials tab. I’m feeling quite frustrated now. PLEASE HELP!!!

    Reply

  33. Lynn Bolsby

    09/08/2016 at 11:50 am

    Thank you so much It worked.

    Reply

  34. Meike

    09/11/2016 at 3:17 pm

    Mine is back to swipe, but whenever I try to go to patter or pin it takes the lock in the setting but when I go to lock it, it goes straight back to swipe.. any suggestions? Samsung galaxy s5 active

    Reply

  35. Developer

    09/15/2016 at 9:44 pm

    Thanks a lot dude…

    Reply

  36. Lawrence Turner

    09/27/2016 at 5:30 am

    On a Samsung Galaxy S5 MIni, the required “Clear Credentials” is under Security in settings, at the bottom.

    Reply

  37. Parth Parmar

    09/28/2016 at 4:39 am

    It worked.. 😃 Thank you for sharing such info….

    Reply

  38. Barbara Gail Shelton

    10/10/2016 at 12:31 am

    Thank u soooo much been dealin with this for over a mth now so ive finally broke down a minute ago nd googled it nd urs was the one i happened to decide to open nd read nd it was very easy to understand nd took about 2 seconds to completely do . This is one happy momma right now..
    #SamsungGalaxyNote3

    Reply

  39. sabyasachi

    10/26/2016 at 11:31 pm

    Thnxx for given valuable help n i would like to many many thnxx again for this costly information towards that type of error in samsung smartphone specially.

    Reply

  40. Rajkumar

    11/01/2016 at 10:40 pm

    Thanks for help

    Reply

  41. Lee

    11/23/2016 at 8:30 am

    Thank you. After trying MANY ways to clear the PIN code password to my lock screen you have finally
    given me the answer. Tried to LiveChat with Verizon but that is a real PITA. Can’t get past all their computer
    junk. It’s impossible to chat with a human any more and that sucks. Again, thanks for the help.

    Reply

  42. John

    12/10/2016 at 4:44 pm

    My phone cant clear all credentials what should i do?

    Reply

  43. Michael Ngubane

    12/13/2016 at 9:46 pm

    Thanks a lot, you are a star.

    Reply

  44. error android

    12/21/2016 at 4:37 am

    what errorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

    Reply

  45. Proto

    01/20/2017 at 5:40 am

    Thank you! ITs worked!

    Reply

  46. Sameer

    01/20/2017 at 8:51 pm

    Thanks…. You may live long..Ameen…
    love you This Worked,!❤💗💞

    Reply

  47. Roderick

    01/23/2017 at 5:56 pm

    Thanks for this.
    It worked.
    Have a nice day, and
    God Bless

    Reply

  48. Nikki

    01/29/2017 at 4:23 pm

    clearing credentials worked for me…I have a samsung galaxy j3 2016 (virgin mobile). I had the lock screen on with a pin. Decided to disable it but when I would try the “none” tab was never lit up as an option to tap. I had a feeling it had something to do with the device administrator. I tried everything I could think of. Tried thru all my security and antivirus apps. None of that worked. Finally I tried to clear credentials and when I went back in thru settings and lock screen and security then lock screen type: pin….it finally allowed me to pick “none”. So thanks a million for the post and the help.

    Reply

  49. sallauddin

    02/09/2017 at 5:41 pm

    Thank u very much for the help.

    Reply

  50. Sweetie

    02/12/2017 at 12:25 am

    Thank you. This post helped me.

    Reply

  51. thomas

    02/25/2017 at 12:54 am

    Thank u so much

    Reply

  52. Sandy

    03/22/2017 at 9:58 pm

    Thank u so much. It’s very helpful. I was harassed last 3 days and then search last minute when all hope are gone away. Thank you

    Reply

  53. Robert

    03/24/2017 at 6:23 am

    Thank you so much! This was driving me nuts and I found this page. Worked like a charm!

    Reply

  54. Lynvia

    04/21/2017 at 11:31 am

    Very helpful. Thank you

    Reply

  55. mahsen Muhammad

    04/28/2017 at 11:19 pm

    this was quick fast and efficient. 1 minute after reading and everything was back to normal again. thanks.

    Reply

  56. ikechukwu nwogwu

    05/19/2017 at 10:49 pm

    helpful

    Reply

  57. Bryan

    05/21/2017 at 1:36 pm

    That method work I was going to clear the credentials but I wasn’t sure what all it would effect. Thank you so much!!

    Reply

  58. royal gupta

    05/22/2017 at 2:22 am

    I have not a word in my mind which I can type here to thank you!
    You have solved a very big problem of mine thanks a lot

    Reply

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