17 December 2019

Google: turning off less secure app access to G Suite accounts

What’s changing: Starting in June 2020, we’ll limit the ability for less secure apps (LSAs) to access G Suite account data. LSAs are non-Google apps that can access your Google account with only a username and password. They make your account more vulnerable to hijacking attempts. Instead of LSAs, you can use apps that support OAuth—a modern and secure access method.

This is most likely to impact users of legacy email, calendar, and contacts apps—see below for more details. We’ve also emailed your organization’s primary admin with details around this change. That email includes a list of users who are likely to be affected.

Access to LSAs will be turned off in two stages:
1) After June 15, 2020 - Users who try to connect to an LSA for the first time will no longer be able to do so. This includes third-party apps that allow password-only access to Google calendars, contacts, and email via protocols such as CalDAV, CardDAV and IMAP. Users who have connected to LSAs prior to this date will be able to continue using them until usage of all LSAs is turned off. 
2) After February 15, 2021 - Access to LSAs will be turned off for all G Suite accounts. 

This is a continuation of our previously announced process to limit access to less secure apps to protect G Suite accounts. See below for more details on the possible impact of this change, and some recommendations for change management with users of LSAs.

Why this matters: Many users use non-Google apps, and give those apps permission to access G Suite data. For example, you may give the iOS mail app or Microsoft Outlook - permission to see your work email.  When account access is provided through an LSA, it puts that account at risk of hijacking. That’s because LSAs provide a non-Google app access to your account through just a username and password, without any other authentication factor.

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