Google will delete inactive accounts this year


Google announced Tuesday that this year it would begin deleting accounts that had been inactive for at least two years.

The reasoning behind the decision, Google said, is security.

“If an account hasn’t been used for an extended period of time, it is more likely to be compromised,” Google said in a statement(opens in a new tab). “This is because forgotten or unattended accounts often rely on old or re-used passwords that may have been compromised, haven’t had two factor authentication set up, and receive fewer security checks by the user.”

Starting in December, Google may delete an account if it hasn’t been used or logged-into during the last two years. That means it would wipe everything in the account, including content within Google Workspace (Gmail, Docs, Drive, Meet, Calendar), YouTube, and Google Photos.

So if you have an account that collects spam emails — the one you use to sign-up for everything meaningless mailing list — make sure you log into it before December. Note that this policy applies only to Google Accounts and not accounts affiliated with schools, businesses, or other such organizations.

If you have a largely inactive account that you want to keep alive, all you need to do is log-in and do…anything at all. Google said that includes things like reading or sending an email, using Google Drive, watching a YouTube video, downloading, an app, using Google search, or using Google to sign into a third-party service. If you have an active subscription through your Google Account that is also considered activity.





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