Few things frustrate more than spending most of your digital life on Google, relying on Gmail to send and receive emails, Google Drive for storage, Google Calendar for your appointments, and Google Photos for your photo archive, and more, just to being blocked from your Google account due to a forgotten password or a nefarious hacker.
If you can’t sign in to your Google account, you can lose touch with loved ones, business contacts and customers, access appointments, and even miss important updates related to your use of the service or other services you subscribe to.
All of these issues can lead to huge losses that will take time to recover, especially since Google will not allow you to log back into your account within a certain number of days due to security delays.
Fortunately, Google allows you to recover your account information, but you need some information such as your email address, phone number, or the date you created your account.
The reason for locking your Google account
Google takes very strict steps to ensure that its products and services operate in accordance with security policies. If there is unusual or suspicious activity in your Google Account, it will block you and you will not be able to access any of its services. It may even temporarily block your account to protect it from abuse or fraud.
Google Help Support lists some specific actions that might block access to the service. This blockage can last anywhere from a minute to 24 hours, or even 30 to 40 hours, depending on the type of activity detected by the system. These actions include:
- Sending a large number of emails that are not delivered.
- Receive, download or delete a large number of emails via POP or IMAP in a short period of time.
- Use your Gmail account from different locations or devices.
- Problems with rebooting the mailbox when using your account in a web browser.
- Providing access to file storage, file sharing, browser extensions, email analysis services, or third party software that automatically logs into your account, causing deceptive behavior without your knowledge.
- Wrong login to your account with wrong password too many times.
To avoid future blocking, avoid any of the above actions and make sure your account is well protected to prevent potential security breaches.
How to recover your Google Account when it’s locked
Depending on your situation, you may need to recover your username or password. Follow these steps to do both.
How to recover your Google account username
If you’ve forgotten your username or email address, follow these steps to recover it.
- Go to the Google login page and click “Need help?” link.
- Then click the Find My Account link below.
- On the Forgot Your Username screen, select Enter Backup Email or Enter Your Recovery Phone Number. Enter your name, check the I am not a robot box and click Submit.
You will receive an email or SMS with your username.
How to recover your Google account password
How to recover your Google Account password
If you know your email address or username but cannot remember your password, you can reset it by following these steps.
- Go to the Google login page and click Need Help? link
- Enter your email address and click Next.
- Enter the last password you can remember and click Next. If you need more options to help you remember, click Try another question and you’ll see options such as the month or year in which you created your account.
If you have a backup email address, it also gives you the option to receive a verification code sent to your backup email address. If you do not have a backup email address, enter the email address or phone number to which the code will be sent.
- Enter the received code and click Next. On a new page, enter your password and repeat it to confirm. Then click Change Password.
Your password has been reset. You can try logging in again. Is your Google account still locked? Try the rest of the solutions below.
How to recover a Google account using 2-step verification
Two-step verification adds another layer of protection to your Google account. However, this requires more than just a password, as you need a different code or action to sign in to your account.
If you’ve enabled 2-Step Verification for your account and now it’s locked, the recovery process will be a little more complicated. It can also make it difficult to regain access to your account if the account has been compromised by hackers and they have enabled 2-Step Verification.
If you enabled 2-Step Verification when creating or setting up your account, you will see a different screen when you try to restore the account, where you enter the code using the default method – email or SMS – that you originally set up. If you are unable to provide the required information, you can click on the “Try another login method” link and you will receive a list of all the settings configured for your account.
There is another option – ask Google to help you get back to your account, which also leads to another screen with additional options.
Scroll down to the bottom of the screen and you will see the Request Google Help link. This process is similar to the regular account recovery steps you follow, but you will be asked additional questions depending on what settings you configured for your account earlier.
If you provide enough information, you will see a Thank you message! We are writing this message. But if you do not provide sufficient proof of ownership, you will instead receive a Google failed to verify message.
Google may complete an investigation within 3-5 business days. Once this is done, they will send you a notification to the contact address you provided. However, your request may be denied, in which case you will have to repeat the process, providing more accurate answers to the questions than those you asked earlier, otherwise Google will not unblock your account.
Note. If you have been blocked from accessing your G Suite account, the only way to reset your password and regain access is to contact the Google Apps administrator for the domain.
Avoid locking your account
It is easy to lose access to your Google account, and there are few funds to recover it because there is no clear system or appeals process to resolve such a problem. This only leaves you on the sidelines with limited or no assistance, especially if you don’t have dedicated Google contacts.
There are ways to prevent this problem, but that means leaving nothing to chance, especially when it comes to login credentials. Here are some important tips:
- Use a password manager to keep your digital life free from remembering your password. If your browser password manager doesn’t help, try one of the best password manager services that will keep your logins safe.
- Using the Google Authenticator app that allows you to verify your logins using a randomly generated number
- Update your phone number and recovery email address.
- Set up additional ways to sign in and verify that you are the account owner, such as setting up phone prompts, saving backup codes to sign in to your account, and setting up security keys.
- Following the last sentence, you should also find out who you most often communicate with, when you created your Google account, what is your backup email address, etc. as they will ask questions like this to confirm your ownership.
Did you manage to get your Google account back using the solutions above? Share your experience in the comment below.