How to permanently delete your Gmail address

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Gmail’s collaboration tools and its integration with other Google products make it an easy choice for most people when it comes to choosing an email service.

Signing up for a Gmail account is quick and easy, and many people have more than one Gmail address for one reason or another. Either way, you might end up with one too many Gmail accounts.

To make your life easier, you can decide to delete a Gmail account, and here’s how you can do it.

Deleting a Gmail account is about as easy as creating an account, but you need to follow the steps carefully if you don’t want to delete your entire Google account.

First, sign out of any other Google or Gmail account you might be signed in to in your web browser. This is an important precaution to avoid deleting the wrong account.

Then you need to sign in to the Google account which has the specific Gmail account that you want to delete. To do this, open a web browser and go to google.com, then click on “Connection” in the upper right corner of the browser

Step 1

Go to myaccount.google.com and log in if you haven’t already. You will see a “Welcome, your name” message at the top of the Google Account management page.

2nd step

On the Google Account Management page, click Data and personalization in the left navigation menu.

Step 3

If you wish, you can download your data before deleting your Gmail account so that you don’t lose anything important. Or, if you don’t need to backup your data, you can just click Delete a service or your account.

Then Google will present you with the options again. If you are ready to delete your Gmail account, click Remove a Google service.

When you click Remove a Google service, you are prompted for your password, and depending on your security settings, you may be required to enter a verification code.

The next screen shows you the list of Google services that you have associated with this Google account, such as Gmail and YouTube, with a trash can icon to the right of each service.

Services to Delete

Last step

Then click on the trash can icon to delete your Gmail account. Google may ask you to verify your identity using another Google verification text.

You will be asked to provide another non-Google email address before you can proceed. This non-Google address is used to connect to other Google services such as Google Play, Docs or Calendar.

Enter the non-Gmail email address, then click Send verification email.

Email verification

Check your other email and open the Gmail verification message. Click the link to continue deleting your Gmail address. This step is important. Your Gmail address will not be deleted until you click on the link.

Before deleting Gmail, you can download your emails by clicking on the “Download data” link at the top of the list of Google services. You can choose to download all emails or select specific labels. The downloaded file will be in MBOX format and can be opened by connecting an active Gmail account with an email client like Thunderbird.

Finally, click on “Remove Gmail” as the last step. Note that deleting your Gmail address will not release your Google / Gmail username.

Next steps

You won’t be able to sign up for Gmail with the same username in the future. Since a Gmail address is also connected to a Google account, deleting it does not delete any data from other Google services like YouTube, Google search history, and Google Drive. If you haven’t downloaded your emails from the account, all of your emails will be inaccessible.

The next thing to do after deleting a Gmail address is to update any document that might have that address. These could be business cards, resumes, contact details for your website and other places where you have given this email address to contact you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are our answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about using, creating, and deleting Gmail accounts.

Can I delete my Gmail while keeping my Google Docs?

Yes, the instructions above are for your Gmail account only. You can still access your Google documents and data saved in the Google suite.

Is Gmail secure?

As with most technologies, the security of Gmail is up to the user. Setting up two-factor authentication, updating your password regularly, and updating your contact details are steps you need to take to keep your Gmail secure.

What happens when someone sends me an email after I delete my account?

The sender will receive a response email indicating that the message is undeliverable. It does not explain why the email was not sent.

What happens if I use my Gmail to sign in to other sites?

Before deleting your email, be sure to update your email address on any accounts it’s linked to. You will need to go to each site and update the contact details.

Final thoughts

Inactive email accounts are prime targets for hackers and they pose the risk of having your personal information stolen. Therefore, if you are not using a particular Gmail address, it is in your best interest to delete it properly rather than leaving it open to hacking. Fortunately, by following the steps outlined above, you can quickly and easily delete any old and forgotten Gmail address.




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