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Fixing Error Codes 15 And 16 The Quick And Easy Way

Most of us are familiar with the common Internet error codes like 404 and 403. What would you do if you encounter an Error Code 15 or 16 though? Let’s take a look at some of the solutions.

What are Error Codes 15 and 16?

When you are trying to access a website and encounter an Error Code 15 or 16, your browser will display the following message.


What this means is that the request is denied by your browser or operating system’s security protocols.

Several reasons can trigger the error codes, mainly:

  • Incorrect date and time: This happens when the web server you are connecting to requires time and date synching with your computer.
  • Geo-blocked address: The site you are accessing accepts traffic only from specific locations.
  • Antivirus program/firewall conflicts: Some third-party security software might have strict connection rules that can restrict access to many sites.

These reasons are not browser-specific, which means you can encounter these errors in most popular browsers. It also appears more commonly in the latest versions of Windows, including Windows 10.

Dealing with the error 15 and 16 codes

The first thing to do when you encounter an Error Code 15 or 16 is to update your time and date settings. To do this in Windows 10, right click on the Taskbar, and click on the Adjust Date and Time option. Click the Sync Time button on the Settings menu to sync your computer’s clock with that of the Microsoft servers.

Checking your VPN connections

The errors can also sometimes crop up when you are using a VPN. To test whether this is the case:

  1. Disconnect your VPN and see if you can open sites normally
  2. Try switching servers to see if the issue is only limited to certain servers
  3. Use a different VPN app if the problem persists.

In case the issue is related to accessing geo-locked content, you might want to switch to a different VPN that offers better unblocking functionalities.

Testing your security software

To see if your security software is the one causing the errors, temporarily disable your firewall and antivirus programs, and try accessing the same sites. You would want to do the test separately for each program to narrow down which one is the actual cause. Adjust the settings of your security software to remedy the problem.

As a final check, you can reset your browser. This will bring all your browser settings back to default, clearing any potential issues. The video below shows how the reset is done on Chrome, with the process being similar for other browsers.


Error Codes 15 and 16 are rather annoying issues when you are browsing the net, but they are easy to fix. Follow the steps we described above if you encounter them so that you can quickly get back online.

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Jeff M