In a game of little chances, Latics could have grabbed all three points had midfielder Lee Croft converted from six yards but goalkeeper Elliott Parish somehow denied him.
That was the best it got for Athletic but Darren Kelly’s men remain unbeaten in the league this season and recorded their second clean sheet of the season.
It was a slow start to the game but Latics were enjoying more of the ball in the opening stages.
The early play was coming down the right-hand side with Connor Brown and Lee Croft influential but neither could muster a clear-cut goalscoring opportunity.
After a mammoth journey on a Tuesday night, it was the Oldham Athletic fans that could be heard from the stands and the players started to react to that support.
With 17 minutes on the clock, Danny Philliskirk was almost slipped in on goal but Colchester defender Tom Eastman just intercepted at the last to thwart Latics.
The visitors were playing some very good football, knocking it about with confidence but the home side seemed content to sit back and let Latics have the ball.
Whenever the back line was called into action, they looked assured with Jonny Burn and James Wilson standing firm at the heart of the defence.
Just after the half hour mark, Liam Kelly almost found the onrushing Philliskirk but U’s goalkeeper Elliott Parish was out quickly to deny the forward a sight of goal.
With shots limited, the first one came on 37 minutes with captain Kelly going close.
The midfielder picked the ball up on the edge of the box, shaped to shoot from 25 yards but Parish did well to tip over the goal bound shot.
From the resulting corner, Latics put the pressure on the U’s and could have taken the lead.
James Wilson’s cross went straight across the box and was just ahead of the onrushing Rhys Turner as Latics starting probing the Colchester goal.
The striker had another opportunity just before the break as Parish missed his kick, but Turner was just intercepted before he could get his shot away.
Colchester started the second half the brighter of the two as midfielder Joe Edwards struck from 25 yards which went inches over Joel Coleman’s goal.
Latics raced up the other end with Philliskirk having his shot blocked before the U’s had two opportunities to take the lead.
Firstly Darren Ambrose struck wide from the edge of the box and Sammie Szmodics blasted the post from the penalty spot as Latics’ defending was being tested.
However, on the hour mark, Latics will wonder how they did not take the lead.
The ball ricocheted into the path of Jonathan Forte whose shot was blocked straight into the path of Croft but out of nowhere Parish pulled off a sublime save on the line to deny the midfielder.
David Dunn was introduced into the game and almost made an instant impact but his through ball was ahead of the onrushing Turner.
Kelly was booked on 69 minutes after being adjudged to have handled on the edge of the box. Ambrose struck the free kick against the wall but two minutes later was allowed another opportunity from close range after another foul.
This time the former Newcastle United man struck Kelly in the wall, and the impact of the shot forced Kelly to be substituted.
George Green was introduced for his competitive debut for Latics and he proved to be a bright spark in the final 15 minutes.
With only five minutes of the game remaining, Latics could have won it after Forte got behind the defence, crossed for Croft but the midfielder again could not convert from close range.
Both sides were putting on the pressure to get something out of the game but they had to settle for a point.
Colchester United: Parish, Edwards, Wynter, Gilbey, Massey, Szmodics, Eastman, Bonne, Vincent-Young, Brindley, Ambrose (Sembie-Ferris 87’).
Subs not used: Lewington, Elokobi, Wright, Olufemi, Kent, Dunne.
Oldham Athletic: Coleman, Brown, Burn, Wilson, Mills, Kelly (Dieng 75’), Jones, Croft, Philliskirk (Dunn 61’), Forte, Turner (Green 71’).
Subs not used: Cornell, Winchester, Poleon, Murphy.
Goals: Colchester United 0-0 Oldham Athletic
Attendance: 2,917 (207 visiting supporters)