In this article you will learn how to restore your Polkadot account either from your 12-word mnemonic phrase or your JSON file in the Polkadot extension. 


We highly recommend that you add your accounts through the browser extension, as it has many advantages:

  1. It provides better security than using the Web UI directly
  2. Your browser won't "forget" your accounts if its cookies are cleared
  3. It allows you to interact with any Web 3.0 compatible site in the Polkadot ecosystem
  4. The extension recognizes all known Polkadot scams and alerts you when you access a phishing site. This will help you protect yourself and your funds.


If you haven't installed the Polkadot extension yet, you can find download instructions here.


Note: The Polkadot extension is an account manager, not a wallet. You will still need to use Polkadot-js UI to interact with your accounts and see your balance. 



a. Restore from your 12-word mnemonic phrase


1. Open your browser extension and click on the orange + (PLUS) sign. Then select "Import account from pre-existing seed".



2. On the next screen, enter your mnemonic seed words. 



NOTE: If you're getting an error and your mnemonic phrase isn't accepted, please check this article.


3. Once entered, more fields will appear. Enter a name for your account and set a password, then click on the orange button on the bottom.  



Your account has now successfully been restored and will appear in the list of accounts of the browser plugin: 



It will also appear in the list of accounts on Polkadot-JS (you may have to refresh the page first before you can see it): 



b. Restore from your JSON file


1. Open the Polkadot extension and click on the + (PLUS) button. Then select "Restore account from backup JSON file".


2. On the next screen, select your JSON file from your computer or drag and drop it in the "Backup file" field. 


3. Now enter the password you set for your account when you created it and click RESTORE. 


IMPORTANT! If you are restoring a "batch" JSON file that you had previously exported from the extension, the file will have its own password, the one you set when you exported it. This password may or may not be the same as any individual password for the accounts it contains.

Your account has now been successfully restored and you will see it in the list of accounts in your browser extension:



You will also see it in the list of accounts on polkadot.js (you may have to refresh the page first before you can see it):