Using your host key

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The host key is a 6-digit PIN used to claim host controls a meeting. You can edit or view your host key in your profile. This host key is applied to meetings you schedule.

You need to use the host key to claim host in these scenarios:


  • If you're an admin, you can change advanced security settings so that users can't change their host key.
  • If a participant has claimed host of someone else's meeting (or a panelist in a webinar) and the original host joins while signed in to their account, the original host will be given the option to reclaim host controls or allow the current host to retain host controls. If the host reclaims host controls, the former host will be demoted to a participant. The host can then promote them back to host or co-host, if they wish or need. This option to claim host or remain participant/panelist requires version 5.8.3 or higher. 

This article covers:


  • Pro, Business, Enterprise, or Education account 

To claim host with the host key

  • Zoom desktop client
    • Windows: 5.0.0 or higher
    • macOS: 5.0.0 or higher
    • Linux: 5.0.0 or higher
  • Zoom mobile app
    • Android: 5.0.0 or higher
    • iOS: 5.0.0 or higher

How to view and customize your host key

You can edit and enter your preferred 6-digit host key. This host key is applied to meetings you schedule.

  1. Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
  2. In the navigation panel, click Profile
  3. Scroll down to the Meeting section.
  4. Select the eye icon next to your Host Key to view your current 6-digit pin.
  5. Click Edit.
  6. Input the new host key desired and click Save.

How to claim host 

Follow these steps if you need to claim the host role when you join a meeting and join before host is enabled. 

  1. Join a meeting.
  2. Click Participants in the meeting controls. 
  3. Click Claim Host at the bottom of the participants list.
  4. Enter your host key. 
  5. Click Claim Host.
    Once the host key is verified, you will have host controls in the meeting.
  1. Join a meeting.
  2. Tap More in the meeting controls. 
  3. Tap Claim Host Role... . 
  4. Enter your host key. 
  5. Tap Claim.
    Once the host key is verified, you will have host controls in the meeting.

You can join via an H.323 or SIP device as the host by adding the host key to your dial string. If Join before host is enabled for the meeting, accessing the in-meeting host menu will also prompt you to enter the host key. 

Note: Even if joining using the host key or via pairing, they will still show as "Guest" to other participants in the meeting. Due to this, participants joining using other Zoom clients may see the notification "Host is not in the meeting yet", even though the device has joined as host. 

Use one of the following dial strings to join as the host:


Meetings without a password:

[IP Address]##[Meeting ID]###[Host Key]

Meetings with a password: 

      [IP Address]##[Meeting ID]#[Password]#[Layout]#[Host Key]


Meetings without a password:

[Meeting ID]...[HostKey]@[IP Address]

Meetings with a password:

[Meeting ID].[Password]..[HostKey]@[IP Address]

Personal Audio Conferences

PAC meetings allow the meeting host (or other participant who knows the host key) to start a PAC meeting by entering the 6-digit host key when prompted. After entering the host key on a PAC meeting, the meeting will start and others will be able to join as participants. The host of the meeting will have host controls available using the dial pad.

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