Manager Mark Robins made one change from last Saturday's draw with Millwall, as Murray Wallace come in for his debut in place of Hakeeb Adelakun.
Joe Anyon remained in goal, with Wallace playing alongside Jack King and Charlie Goode in defence. Scott Laird and Jordan Clarke were the wing-backs, with Sean McAllister and Neal Bishop operating as the midfield two. Kevin van Veen played the supporting role to Darius Henderson and Paddy Madden up front.
The Iron took the lead within six minutes of the kick-off, thanks to a moment of brilliance from Dutchman van Veen. The United number 10 curled his free-kick expertly into the left-hand corner of the net from all of 30 yards. It left U's 'keeper Elliot Parish helpless.
The lead was a well deserved one, after a positive and confident opening ten minutes from Robins' side.
Ten minutes later it was two. Laird brilliantly picked out Madden with a 40-yard pass, leaving the Irishman clean through on goal. The striker then did what he's done so many times for the club, and finished emphatically.
It took the hosts over 25 minutes to get going and even when they did, all they could muster was a wayward chip from George Moncur, which Anyon watched drift past his left hand post.
The Iron were on top and could have made it three, minutes later, as new signing Wallace went on a run down the left flank and picked out Madden at the back post. He couldn't add to his previous strike however, as he struck his volley over the crossbar.
The visitors were punished soon after however as, after some good play inside the box, the ball was cut back to Moncur, who slotted home after having the ball pulled back to him.
Credit has to go to referee Whitestone as well, as he played a smart advantage after Goode tripped Gavin Massey in the area.
This brought about a spell of sustained pressure from the hosts, as they had two efforts on the Iron goal in quick succession.
United's frustration was clear to see, with Henderson going into the book for a late challenge.
The shots continued to rain down on Anyon's goal. This time it was winger Callum Harriot, who cut in from the right hand flank and hit a curling effort into the arms of the Iron 'keeper in the 44th minute.
Just after the fourth official had raised his board to indicate three minutes of added time, Anyon had more work to do, as he clawed away a Joe Edwards effort from ten yards out.
Despite hanging for a lengthy duration of the first period, United went in at the break leading by a one goal margin.
Robins made one change at the break, taking off Goode and bringing on Adelakun in his place.
The hosts started the second period in the same vain as they ended the first, with Massey hitting a venemous shot from around 25 yards, which flew marginally over Anyon's goal.
Substitute Adelakun was beginning to cause problems for Colchester and, after some quick footwork, the winger fired over on 56 minutes.
Once more Adelakun was instrumental in another Iron attack. This time he picked out Henderson at the back post, whose downward header was begging to be hit, but van Veen couldn't get there in time.
In the 63rd minute, there was a return to first team action for Dave Syers, as he came on to replace Henderson.
The U's continued to probe for an equaliser, with the ever dangerous Massey testing Anyon with a fizzing low drive.
After 81 minutes, the Iron's resistance was broken, as George Elokobi powered home a header from a corner kick.
United almost restored their lead instantly, but Syers' strike was hit straight into the arms of Parish in the Colchester goal.
As the match headed into the final five minutes, Robins' men were looking the most likely to get a winner, and went close once more as Madden dragged his effort just past the post.
Debutant Wallace was then forced into a last ditch defensive header in the 89th minute, after Harriot had cut in from the left hand side.
Despite their best efforts, the Iron couldn't find a winner and had to settle for a point.
Colchester United: Parish, Briggs, Edwards (Garvan 46), Elokobi, Gilbey, Moncur (Szmodics 75), Massey, Eastman, Bonne (Wright 75), Vincent-Young, Harriot.
Substitutes not used: Lewington, Wynter, Kent, Sembie-Ferris.
Scunthorpe United: Anyon, Laird, Clarke, Wallace, King, Goode (Adelakun 46), van Veen (Hopper 71), Henderson (Syers 63), Madden, McAllister, Bishop.
Substitutes not used: Daniels, Wiseman, McSheffrey, Wootton.
Attendance: 3,019 (251 away).