Warning: Google Photos will delete your snaps if you don’t log in
Google has announced it will delete accounts and their contents if the user doesn’t log in for two years.
The updated inactive accounts policy states that you’ll need to log-in at least once every two years to maintain access to Gmail, Docs, Drive, Meet, Calendar, YouTube and Google Photos.
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Critically, if that time expires, all content related to those accounts will be permanently deleted. So, if you use Google Photos as a storage locker for photos from an old Android phone, for example, you will lose them if you don’t log into that associated Google account at least once every two years.
“You will need to specifically sign in to Google Photos every 2 years to be considered active which will ensure your photos and other content are not deleted. Similarly, we will send multiple notifications before we take any action,” Google writes in the blog post.
Google says the updated policy is designed to prevent those accounts being hijacked or compromised due to older or reused passwords and the absence of two-factor authentication.
Those account holders are also less likely to have seen any of the security warnings that may have been sent. Google says it’ll roll out the policy slowly, but will commence deleting accounts from December this year.
The cull will start with “accounts that were created and never used again” and Google will send users multiple notifications before deleting the account. Those notifications will also be sent to the recovery email.
Google, naturally, says the best way to keep the account active is to log into any of the services where it’s used and use them. That can also include watching YouTube, using Google Search or downloading an app from the Play Store.