Removing Gmail from consumer accounts

This document describes how you can remove Gmail from an existing consumer account to enable the user account to be migrated to Cloud Identity or Google Workspace.

If your organization doesn't use Cloud Identity or Google Workspace, it's possible that some of your employees have been using Gmail accounts to access Google services. Some of these Gmail accounts might use a corporate email address such as alice@example.com as an alternate email address.

Gmail accounts are owned and managed by the individuals who created them. Your organization therefore has no control over the configuration, security, and lifecycle of these accounts, which means they can't be migrated as is. By removing Gmail from affected consumer accounts, you allow the user accounts to be migrated to Cloud Identity or Google Workspace.

Consider removing Gmail from an existing consumer account if both of the following conditions apply:

  • You want to migrate the user account to Cloud Identity or Google Workspace and retain the user's settings and data.
  • You don't use the email functionality provided by Gmail.

If you want to retain Gmail functionality, or if you want to avoid engaging the owner of a Gmail account, consider sanitizing the Gmail account instead.

Before you begin

To remove Gmail from a user account, at least one of the alternate email addresses of the Gmail account must correspond to one of the domains that you've added to your Cloud Identity or Google Workspace account. Both primary and secondary domains qualify, but alias domains are not supported.

The following sections walk through the process of removing Gmail from a consumer account. The steps must be performed by the owner of the Gmail account.

Exporting Gmail data

Before you remove Gmail from your user account, you must export your existing Gmail data. You won't be able to access that data after you remove Gmail from the account. (Non-Gmail data is not affected.)

For information about how to export your Gmail data, see Download your data.

Removing the Gmail service

  1. In the Google Account dashboard, open the Data & personalization page.

    Go to Data & personalization

  2. Under Download or delete your data, select Delete a service.

  3. Click Delete a service. You might be prompted to enter your password again.

  4. Click the icon next to the service you want to delete.

  5. In the How you'll sign in to Google dialog, select your corporate email address and click Next.

  6. Carefully read the explanations on the next screen. If you're sure you want to proceed, select Yes and click Delete Gmail.

It might take a few days until your corporate email address becomes the primary email address of the user account and the Gmail data is deleted. Although you won't be able to receive or send email using your @gmail.com email address anymore, the address remains associated with your user account and you can continue to use it to sign in.

Migrating the user account

When the removal process has completed and the user account has been updated to use your corporate email address as the primary email address, your admin can migrate the user account to Cloud Identity or Google Workspace like other consumer accounts. For more information, see Migrating consumer accounts

Best practices for admins

We recommend the following best practices for working with Gmail accounts:

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