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Why Laptop asking for a BitLocker Recovery Key?

The Problematic Scenario:

Your Laptop asking for a BitLocker Recovery Key, out of the blue! You have not enabled Bitlocker on the machine and you do not even have a recovery key. You have logged in using a local account and not with a Microsoft account. But somehow, you see the prompt for the Bitlocker Recovery key while you boot your Windows 10 laptop.

To solve this issue, you might have thought of formatting your HDD, but that is not a good idea as you may lose all your data if you don’t have a valid backup.

Now, how did Bitlocker get enabled if it was not done by you? Well, it might have been enabled by default and it would have arisen from a hardware component update. The update could have happened via Windows update or through your laptop’s update manager.

Laptop asking for a BitLocker Recovery Key


Bitlocker might force you to generate a Recovery Key in case your laptop was just refurbished via the deletion of current users. Or else, the issue would have arisen if you have used BleachBit to delete any unnecessary data from your laptop. If you have done any of these two, the settings like Bitlocker might continue to remain on your laptop.

Note: BleachBit is a free disk-space cleaner and a system optimizer. By using this software, you can free your cache, delete your cookies, and delete your logs.

Now, let us get back to the problem at hand.

In some cases, when you update the BIOS on your laptop, Bitlocker encryption might get enabled automatically.

Some other causes that make your laptop request you for the Bitlocker Recovery Key are as follows:

  1. Any major update on your laptop
  2. A CMOS reset
  3. A tampered boot loader
  4. The data on your laptop could have been wiped out, so you can try recovering the data using any reliable recovery tool.
  5. Next time you buy a refurbished laptop, you have to perform a clean install by yourself. This process can be done if you know what operating system you will be using.
  6. At times, if you just leave your laptop to rest, the request message (asking you for the Bitlocker Recovery Key) might vanish by itself, and your laptop will be able to reboot.
  7. There are also some methods available using which you can remove the Bitlocker drive encryption. But that will be another long story.

Now we have seen why is Laptop asking for a BitLocker recovery key.