It is possible that users of Gmail who do not use their accounts frequently will not be able to access them in the following month. Millions of Gmail accounts could potentially be erased in December 2023 as part of a procedure designed to deactivate accounts that haven’t been used for at least two years.
Google stated it is lowering the risk in a blog post published in May by Ruth Kricheli, vice president of product management. Google is extending its two-year Google Account inactivity policy to all of its products.
Beginning in December, we reserve the right to delete a Google account and all of its contents, including Google Workspace (Gmail, Docs, Drive, Meet, Calendar), Google Photos, and other content, if the account has not been used or logged into for at least two years.
“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,” according to the blog post.
According to our own research, the likelihood that two-step verification is enabled on abandoned accounts is at least ten times lower than that of active accounts. These accounts are frequently weak points, and if they are taken advantage of, they can be exploited for everything from identity theft to spreading harmful or undesired content, such as spam.”
Who is at risk?
The regulation does not apply to Google accounts belonging to corporations or educational institutions; rather, it solely affects personal Google accounts that haven’t been used to access Gmail in the last two years.
How to maintain account activity?
The Google blog article states that logging in at least once every two years is the easiest approach to maintain an active Google account. Your account is deemed active and won’t be erased if you have recently logged into your Google Account or any of our services. The following kinds of activities could be considered activity when you sign in or when using your Google Account:
1.) Examining or replying to an email
2.) Google Drive use
3.) Watching a YouTube clip
4.) Downloading an application from the Google Play Store
5.) Utilizing Google search
6.) logging into a third-party app or service using Google Sign-in
Your account will not be impacted if you have an active subscription associated with your Google Account, such as Google One, a news outlet, or an app. Google will consider this continuous account activity. Moreover, Google does not currently have plans to remove user accounts connected to YouTube content.