Gmail plans to start permanently deleting inactive accounts on December 1. Since November is almost over, we decided to give you one final urgent reminder to log into your old burner accounts to make sure they survive the Great Google Purge.
According to the plan Google announced a couple of months ago, if there’s a Gmail account you haven’t used in at least two years, Google will consider it inactive and delete it. And there are quite a few things you’re going to lose with that, including all your Google Photos, Google Calendar events, Google Docs, and, of course, emails.
All you have to do to make sure that the Gmail purge doesn’t get you is use your account in any way before December starts. ‘Using your account’ could mean something as simple as signing in to it, reading or sending an email, using Google Drive, watching a YouTube video, sharing photos, downloading an app, or using Google Search while you’re logged in.
Thankfully, not all Gmail accounts are at risk. The deletion announcement only applies to personal Gmail accounts. So your employer, school, or organisation emails are all safe. You’re also safe if your account was ever used to purchase something on the Google Play store or if it has a gift card with an active balance. Also, Google said that they will send a notification and a recovery email before they delete your account, so that’s another small relief.
Google says it’s doing this to ensure the safety of your account. Hackers love taking over specifically inactive accounts and sometimes using those to send out scam emails. Apparently, they’re easier to take over inactive accounts since they tend not to have two-factor authentication enabled.
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