Gmail: Google implements a policy that could soon delete billions of accounts, here’s how to prevent it

Google is implementing a policy that will lead to some Gmail users losing their accounts. Here's what you need to know.

gmail deleted accounts inactivity policy
© Solen Feyissa/Unsplash
gmail deleted accounts inactivity policy

Google's previously announced inactivity policy for Google Accounts to 2 years across its products is finally being implemented this December. This could result in some Gmail users no longer having an account.

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Google's Ruth Kricheli said:

If a Google Account has not been used or signed into for at least 2 years, we may delete the account and its contents – including content within Google Workspace (Gmail, Docs, Drive, Meet, Calendar), YouTube and Google Photos.

Keeping your account

But don’t worry, there’s a simple way to ensure your accounts remain online.

If you use them on a regular basis, you won’t be affected. The new rules only impact those who haven't used their Gmail or Photos accounts for two years. So, if you want to keep your account, make sure you log in and use it to prevent losing it.

When the deadline is up, Google will assess whether or not to delete the accounts and everything that is stored within them.

The reason behind the policy

The US tech company says the move aims to decrease security threats such as spam, phishing scams, and account hijacking. Kricheli wrote in a post on the firm's blog:

People want the products and services they use online to be safe and secure.
If an account hasn’t been used for an extended period of time, it is more likely to be compromised. 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.

Google says the policy only affects personal Google Accounts and users will be notified before deletion so you should have substantial notice before your accounts are gone forever.

Read more:

Google issues warning over old photos that could be deleted next month, here's how to save them

Google to start purging dormant accounts next month, here's how to save yours

Sources used:

Mirror: Your Gmail account could be deleted by Google this year but there's a simple way to avoid it

Express: Gmail users must take action today to stop emails and photos being deleted for good

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