Your inactive Google account may be deleted this week – here's how to stop it

The time is nigh. That inactive Google account you probably set up for a spare email to get another free trial of a streaming service, could be among those culled this week.

Back in May, Google announced it was deleting personal accounts that had been inactive for at least two years, starting with those that been set up and not used again.

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That would mean any content associated with the account, including Gmail, Docs, Drive, Meet, Calendar, and Google Photos would also disappear into the either.

Google said the process would begin in December 2023 – at the earliest. Although the deletion process will be phased, December begins on Friday. That means there’s still time to rescue things.

First off, if your account is among those set for the chop, you should know about it by now. Google will have been bending your ear about it via the recovery email address you set up.

If you haven’t heard and still want to protect the account, there are a few ways to do so. Google recommends signing in at least once every two years. Not so hard, is it? While you’re signed in, it’ll help to show it’s active too. That can include:

  • Reading or sending an email
  • Using Google Drive
  • Watching a YouTube video
  • Downloading an app on the Google Play Store
  • Using Google Search
  • Using Sign in with Google to sign in to a third-party app or service

This should ensure any data you wish to protect will survive the deletion. If you’re actually happy for the account and the data associated with it – hey, one less thing to worry about being hacked, right? – then you can allow the process to run its natural course. Or you can be proactive and delete your Google account.