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Are you locked out of your British Airways Executive Club account? And how can you get in?

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Last Thursday something odd happened at British Airways Executive Club. We don’t know what, but a substantial number of Executive Club accounts were locked.

I only know of one HfP reader who had fraudulent transactions made from their Executive Club account just before the lockdown happened, if it was linked to a security issue. What is not clear is what the criteria were for locking down accounts, and why it has been done so harshly.

(BA told us that “there is nothing to suggest a data breach/cyber attack” so the above example may be a coincidence. Accounts were locked following “routine monitoring”.)

If your account is locked, it seems that it will not be unlocked until you speak to British Airways and request it. There is no point in sitting around and waiting because, based on multiple reports from discussions with the call centre, it won’t happen.

Are you locked out of your British Airways Executive Club account?

What went wrong with BA’s response?

British Airways could have handled this better, frankly.

When accounts were locked last week, British Airways did one of two things:

Option 1 – nothing

British Airways has admitted to us that many people were not told that their accounts had been locked. This has been blamed on an ‘error’. I was in this group.

Option 2 – members were told their accounts were UNLOCKED

My wife was in this group. Last Thursday she received the following email:

“Subject: We’ve unlocked your account

We take the protection of your data seriously. We’ve unlocked your access to your Executive Club account. Please log-in and change your password to keep your account secure.”

This was untrue, of course. BA had actually locked her account, not unlocked it. Resetting the password was also not enough to get the block lifted.

Bizarrely, for an email sent as the result of a security issue, the email contained her full Executive Club account number, her Avios balance, her tier point balance and her lifetime tier point balance.

Why were accounts locked?

Different people are receiving different emails. This is what I got when my account was unlocked (we’ll get to how you do that in a second):

“Dear Mr Burgess

Following a thorough investigation by British Airways Revenue Protection, we have re-instated xxx,xxx Avios to your British Airways Executive Club account.  Your account has now been unfrozen and is fully active.

I would like to thank you for your patience during this investigation and hope that you can now continue to enjoy the many great benefits of your Executive Club membership.

If you would like to contact me again about this case please click on this link: case

Best regards
Audit Executive”

Are you locked out of your British Airways Executive Club account?

Here’s a different version that is going out:

“In line with all major companies which operate a financial rewards and incentives scheme, British Airways constantly reviews transactions on its Executive Club members’ database. This is to ensure compliance with the Terms and Conditions of the programme and to protect our members from any activity, which could be considered unusual.

During this process we found some activity of concern with your account. We believe it is still secure but as an added precaution please can you update your password. You can confirm you have done this by contacting me on the link at the end of this email.

In the meantime, to make sure your account is safe, I have had to place it into Lock status. Please accept my apologies for any inconvenience this may cause but please be assured you will still be able to accrue awards as normal.

If you wish to make a Reward booking during this period, you will need to contact your nearest service centre.

To reset your password you’ll need to click on the ‘Forgotten PIN/Password?’ link under the login box on, enter your Login ID and then submit your request.

If you’re still unable to successfully reset your password, you’re welcome to call us or click on the link below, so we can talk you through the steps to get you into your account.

Once I have received confirmation I will look into unlocking your account.

Thank you for your patience and co-operation during this time and I hope to hear from you soon.”

Note that, in this case, BA will not consider reopening the account until the password is changed.

How can you get your account unlocked?

As far as I can tell, no-one has had their account unlocked without proactively contacting British Airways.

The call centre needs to make a request to the Account Security team, and your request will be looked at. Some people are being told it will take 7-10 days but in reality it seems to be clearing within a few hours.

Reports on Flyertalk bring up people who have not had their case automatically escalated but have been told to email or

If you are not in a position to call and do not need quick access, you may want to try emailing the addresses above. You must email from the address associated with your BAEC account. Good luck!


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 2023)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

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Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

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British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

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The Platinum Card from American Express

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Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

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You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

EDIT: Applications for this card are temporarily suspended due to IT issues with the British Airways On Business SME loyalty scheme.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

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There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (146)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Paul says:

    I got through by phone and was told to ‘clear all my cookies’. There should be a law, backed up by unlimited fines, against any company telling customers to do this, given the unintended consequences that can arise.
    When I said I was not at all happy with this approach, I was then told to simply go down the ‘forgotten password, request a reset’ route; and this has indeed cleared the problem. I am pretty sure BA tecchies did nothing their end, so no need to ring anyone up – when you will probably be given bad advice – just self help by resetting your password.

  • Scott says:

    Just had to use the chat to ask for my account to be unlocked. When asked why it was locked they said: “Following routine monitoring, we decided to lock a number of Executive Club due to some data breach issue…”

    • Scott says:

      To add, I tried resetting my password, but account remained locked. Not sure if it would’ve unlocked automatically a few days after resetting.

  • PCL says:

    not sure if it happened to anyone else or just me; my past flights records are gone once my account is unblocked.

  • Nick says:

    Interesting note from an Audit Exec on email, after they unlocked my account and I asked why it had been locked in the first place. Note – nowhere did I mention anything about unauthorised access…

    Thank you for getting back in touch with me regarding the recent unauthorised attempt to access your Executive Club account.

    We regularly run checks on all IT related activity on, which is how we noticed your account was registering suspicious behaviour, so although I’m not able to provide information about specific IT security, we are continuing to investigate this incident. There are a number of ways someone can obtain credentials, i.e. through WIFI and Malware, but this was more likely to be by trial or error.

    I certainly understand your concerns about protecting your personal information, and therefore advise you to choose another robust password, containing a mixture of characters.

    So it sounds like someone/group was trying to get into BA accounts via credential stuffing (guessing known/leaked usernames and passwords from other data breaches) which prompted a bunch of accounts to be locked.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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