Google to delete inactive accounts starting December 2023

Google announced on Tuesday that it would start deleting accounts that hadn’t been used or signed into for two years, starting December 2023.

Ruth Kricheli, Google’s Vice President of Product Management, said in a blog post that abandoned accounts are more likely to be targeted by security threats since they usually depend on passwords that are old and may have been compromised, don’t have two-factor authentication enabled, and get fewer security checks by their users.

Also Read: ‘password’ is now the most common password, but could be cracked in a second

Kricheli said that such accounts are 10x less likely to have two factor authentication enabled than active accounts, which means that ‘’these accounts are often vulnerable, and once an account is compromised, it can be used for anything from identity theft to a vector for unwanted or even malicious content, like spam.’’

‘’To reduce this risk, we are updating our inactivity policy for Google Accounts to 2 years across our products,’’ he added. ‘’Starting later this year, 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.’’

Also Read: The Best 2FA Apps for iOS and Android

Google’s inactivity policy change will only apply to personal Google Accounts and won’t impact those associated with organizations such as schools and businesses. 

The Android-maker will start the deletion process with accounts that were created but never used again. The company will inform the owners of the accounts that will be impacted by the change via their personal, and if provided, recovery emails.

Earlier this month, Twitter’s owner Elon Musk also announced that the social media company would remove accounts that haven’t been used for a long time.

Written by Tuna Cetin


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