In December 2023, Google will begin deleting Google accounts that are no longer used. For some Google/Googlemail account owners, there could be a rude awakening in December. This is when you have ignored all notification emails from Google and have not used your Google account for two years. In this case, Google deletes the Gmail account.
It starts with these accounts
In December 2023, Google will not delete all Gmail accounts that have not been used for two years in one fell swoop, but will do this step by step. First, Google wants to delete Google accounts that were created and then never used again. Google only closes Gmail accounts that were used after they were created a little later.
As already reported, Google does not delete the accounts without warning. Instead, Google informed the owners of the affected accounts several times by email of the impending deletion. Google has been sending these warning emails since August 2023. On the one hand, the warning emails were sent to the Gmail account that was threatened with deletion, but on the other hand – if specified – also to the email address that the user provided to restore the Gmail account.
How to avoid deletion
Have you been ignoring Google reminder emails and not using your Gmail account for two years, but still want to keep it? No problem: There are several options to prevent deletion. These are:
Simply log back into your Google account now
Read or send an email
Use Google Drive
Watch a YouTube video
Share a photo
Download an app
Use Google Search while logged in
Use Sign in with Google to sign in to the third-party app or service
In fact, not every Gmail account that is no longer in use is at risk of being deleted. Google will not delete the following unused Google accounts:
Google account with YouTube channels, videos or comments
Accounts with a cash value gift card
Accounts with a published app, such as an account that hosts an app in the Google Play Store
That’s why Google deletes inactive accounts
Google has determined that unused accounts pose a security risk. For such unused accounts, users would often use old and/or reused passwords that have already fallen victim to hacker attacks or data collectors. In addition, such old accounts are usually not protected by 2-factor authentication.
Users would also rarely subject such old and unused accounts to security checks. However, once hackers have hijacked such an unused account, they can use it for many other attacks, such as identity theft or to spread malware and spam.