Having an idea of your Gmail login history is really important, and conducting a regular check can make you know whenever your Gmail account has been compromised. In this post, I will be showing you how you can easily conduct a Gmail login history check.
Gmail is no doubt he most popular webmail client you will find in the world today. There is hardly anyone who does not have a Gmail account. Whenever you are notified of suspicious activity on your account, it is wise you carry out a Gmail login history check.
Whenever you use a new device (a phone, tablet, laptop, or a shared computer) to login into Gmail, Google sends an alert to the device or account you have chosen for such security notifications. Most times, we usually say “Yes that was me”, and try to go about our business. But if the notification comes at moments we have not been using our Gmail, it is important we dig into the security logs to see what is actually going on.
The notifications that we do receive, only provide one data point – one location, one login date, and one browser. The big question is, what if there are other many attempts, or what if your Gmail account has been compromised? What if someone has been monitoring your Gmail activity or sending out malicious emails in your name?
The questions are many.
This is why in this post, I will be showing you how to effectively review your Gmail login history so that you can detect if an unauthorized user has been trying to gain access to your account.
Detecting a Compromised Gmail Account
To detect unauthorized users, you first of all need to know who the authorized users are. Specifically, Gmail does not track users, it only tracks sessions. Those sessions are identified by the browser’s software, the device, and the IP address used for the access. This means that you will need to know which devices you have used to log in to your Gmail account, the IP addresses from which you have accessed it, the browsers you used to login, and the exact dates when you logged on to check your email.
The second step is to conduct a Gmail login history check in order to figure out when and where someone used your account. When you do this, you will be able to flag unauthorized access points and prevent a reoccurrence.
How to Conduct a Gmail Login History Check
To check your Gmail login history, just follow the steps outlined below:
- Logging to your Gmail account
- From the bottom-right of your dashboard, click on “Details” as shown in the image below
This will then open up a new tab, showing your account activity information
The table above will show you the browser used, the IP address, the country of origin, and the date and time of the login. From this tab, you can choose to “Sign out all other Gmail web sessions” if you noticed any unauthorized or foreign activity.
You can also check for other details regarding each login by clicking on the “Show Details” link next to the browser tag.
Another way you can check your Gmail login history is to visit the Recent Security Events page. On the page, you can view logins from unauthorized locations and flag them.
The Importance of Checking Your Gmail Login History
Like we already know, Gmail is a cloud-based email service, so it cannot automatically block unauthorized IP addresses from logging in to an account. If it does, they will be blocking their legitimate users every time they changed phones or tried logging in from another device. Therefore, the only step you can take to secure your account is to flag potentially suspicious events like unauthorized logins.
Most Gmail users do not change their passwords on a regular basis, therefore, carrying out a Gmail login history checkup every now and then is very much important. This can checkmate every unauthorized user who wants to login to your account. Apart from that, even if you change your password regularly, you cannot know is someone has a keylogger on your computer or some other way of finding out your current password.
If you discovered authorized legitimate logins, but from dates and times when you knew you were not in Gmail, then perhaps, someone has physical access to your devices and is taking advantage.
The best way you can keep your account safe is to regularly perform a Gmail login history check, and also report devices that should not have access to the account. The good news is that any new IP or login device is flagged by Gmail, so you should receive notification email almost instantly so that you can take quick actions accordingly