By using the perpendicular-exchange-biased Pt/Co/α-Cr 2O 3 system, we provide experimental evidence that the unreversed uncompensated Cr spins exist at the Co/α-Cr 2O 3 interface. The unreversed uncompensated Cr spin manifests itself in both the vertical shift of an element-specific magnetization curve and the relative peak intensity of soft-x-ray magnetic circular dichroism spectrum. We also demonstrate an in situ switching of the interfacial Cr spins and correspondingly a reversal of the exchange bias without interfacial atomic diffusion. Such switching shows the direct relationship between the interfacial antiferromagnetic spins and origin of the exchange bias. The demonstrated switching of exchange bias would likely offer a new design of advanced spintronics devices, using the perpendicular-exchange-biased system, with low power consumption and ultrafast operation.