Google announced on Tuesday its intention to delete unused accounts in an effort to enhance security and address potential security risks, including hacking.
According to Google, accounts that have been inactive or unused for at least two years may be subject to deletion. This policy will apply to Google Workspace applications such as Gmail, Docs, Drive, Meet, Calendar, as well as YouTube and Google Photos.
It’s important to note that this account deletion policy specifically targets personal Google Accounts and does not include accounts associated with organizations like schools or businesses.
Previously, Google had only removed content stored in inactive accounts without deleting the accounts themselves. To ensure users are aware of the upcoming changes, Google will send multiple notifications to the account email address and recovery mail of inactive accounts prior to deletion.
In a similar move, Elon Musk recently stated that Twitter would remove inactive accounts and archive them to free up unused usernames.
Additionally, there are reports suggesting that non-European Union (EU) cloud service providers, including Google, Microsoft, and Amazon, seeking an EU cybersecurity label to handle sensitive data may need to establish joint ventures with EU-based companies. According to a draft document seen by Reuters, such joint ventures would require US tech giants and other participants to hold only minority stakes, while employees with access to EU data would need to undergo specific screening and be located within the EU’s 27-country bloc.
In another development, shares of Alphabet, Google’s parent company, experienced a decline of over 4 percent in premarket trading following rumors that Samsung Electronics is considering replacing Google with Microsoft-owned Bing as the default search engine on its devices.