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Google will delete inactive accounts – hurry up and log in!😯

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Do you have a Google Account that you haven’t used in a while? If you don’t want it to disappear, you need to log in before the end of the week.

Why does Google delete inactive accounts?

Accounts that haven’t been used for a long time are more likely to be compromised, the company said, noting that « forgotten or unmonitored accounts » typically have old passwords, often lack two-factor authentication and are subject to fewer security checks. As a result, these accounts can be used for spam or other malicious content, as well as for identity theft.

Google specifies that accounts are considered inactive when no activity has been detected on them for two years (no Google searches, no e-mail consultations, no application downloads). If at least one trace of activity has been recorded, on any device, the account will not be deleted.

The deletions will be phased in from the beginning of December, and will affect virtually all data associated with an account: e-mails (Gmail), Drive files, search history… Accounts that have been used to publish one or more videos on YouTube are not affected by the deletions, adds the company in its blog post announcing this deletion policy, published in May.

The company also assures us that the account holders concerned have received warnings about their emergency e-mail address in recent months, when they have entered one.

If you’re not yet up to speed with this new policy and want to make sure your content is backed up on Google Drive, Docs, Gmail and more, here’s what you need to know.

How do I keep my account active?

The easiest way to keep your Google Account active (and therefore prevent it from being deleted) is to log in at least once every two years. Logical😅. But that’s not all😉

Sending or scrolling e-mails, using Google search and watching videos on YouTube (YouTube is owned by Google) are other actions that fulfill the account activity requirements, while logged into your Google Account.

Existing subscriptions set up through your Google Account, including profiles for third-party applications and publications, count towards managing account activity.

Preserving content in Google Photos requires a special connection. As Google previously announced, you’ll be able to write off your Photos content after two years of inactivity. This means you’ll need to open the application from time to time to prevent your images from going to waste. Hurry up!

Any exceptions to this rule?

Only personal Google accounts are affected, not those created for organizations, such as schools or businesses, says Google. According to Google’s online policies, other exceptions include Google accounts that manage active minor accounts, accounts containing a gift card balance, and accounts for ongoing purchases of Google products, applications or subscriptions.

Puis-je sauvegarder les données de mon compte Google ?

As well as keeping your Google account active, there are a few tools to help you manage and back up your data.

Google Takeout, for example, allows users to download and export their account data outside Google at any time.

The Inactive Account Manager lets you choose what happens to your account and data if it becomes inactive. In particular, you can choose to send certain files to trusted contacts, or delete the account entirely.

Google’s online policies also state that the company may work with the immediate family to close the account of a deceased loved one and/or provide certain content from the account.

Google asks users to provide and update a recovery email for their account.

One last announcement: Reactivate your Google😅 account as soon as possible.

Sources: Google, Google, PresseCitron, PhonAndroid

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