How to Get AWS Access Key

AWS Access key is given at the time of user creation. It is used for authentication purposes at the time of configuration. You can access many other AWS services by using the Access key. It is associated with the “IAM” account. All the configurations set at the time of user creation are linked with the Access key and other AWS services can use these configurations attached to the Access key. There are two methods of getting an Access key and both are discussed below.

This post contains these sections:

Let’s start with how to get the AWS Access key.

Get the Access Key by Creating a New User

To get an AWS Access key, you need to get into the “IAM” dashboard, for that simply search IAM from the search bar of the AWS console. Click on the “IAM” button to access the dashboard.

On the IAM dashboard, you need to select the “User” section by clicking on it. Then click on the “Add users” button:

Start with entering the user’s name and tick the box for “Access Key-Programmatic access” so that it will give you the Access key at the end of the process. Click on the “Next: Permissions” button.

On the Permissions page, you need to set permissions for your user: click on the “Next” button to move forward with the process.

Tags” are optional, you can skip that step by clicking on the “Next” button. After all the configurations, simply click on the “Create user” button to create the user:

At the end of this process, you will get the “Access key ID” displayed on the screen. You can copy it from the screen and use it immediately. If you don’t want to use the Access key now and want to save it for later, click on the “Download.csv” button.

Before saving the file, it will ask you for the path in the PC where you want to save this file, and the name of the file can also be changed:

The file containing the Access key is saved on your PC, and you can open it and use this Access key anytime:

You have successfully got the Access key by creating a user in IAM.

Get the Access key From Existing User

If you already have the user created and just want to get the access key without creating the new user, then simply click on the name of the user on the “Users” page:

After clicking on the name of the user, you will be brought to the “Summary” page. Click on the “Security credentials” section:

Scroll down the page in the “Security credentials” section to see the “Access keys” section. You can copy the Access key from this section, and if you want to get the Secret key as well, click on the “Create access key” button:

From this page, you can download the file containing the Access key and Secret key. Simply click on the “Download.csv” button or copy the Access key from the page. By creating a new Access key, the old Access key will become inactive.

You have successfully got the Access key without Creating a new user.


You can get the Access key at the end of the user creation process and also from the existing user. You have to create a new user from which you can get the Access key and you can also get the Access key from an existing user by clicking on the “Create access key” button in the “Security credentials” section. From both of these methods, you can download the file containing the Access and Secret key to be used later. This post has covered both ways of getting an AWS Access key.

About the author

Abdul Mannan

I am curious about technology and writing and exploring it is my passion. I am interested in learning new skills and improving my knowledge and I hold a bachelor's degree in computer science.