Changes to Less Secure Apps

Last updated: January 13, 2023


To ensure improved security standards when using third-party apps, Google is retiring the option to log in to Google services using a Google account’s username and password. For most impacted users, this means they will have to configure their UW Gmail account in a supported email client that uses modern authentication protocols to handle the authentication process in a more secure manner. The changes for Google Workspace (for Education) and Cloud Identity accounts will take effect in October 2022, however UW-IT will make the switch prior to the vendor’s final cutoff on September 6, 2022.

For more information about the upcoming changes, please see Google’s announcement: Less secure apps & your Google Account.

Note: The industry standard term for the legacy protocol is basic authentication or basic auth. Google has chosen to use the term “less secure.”

Addressing Less Secure Apps

The simplest way to address the use of a less secure email client is to use a supported email client. UW Gmail can be configured in a wide variety of email clients. However, due to the complexity introduced when adding a Gmail account to an email client, only a few email clients are supported by UW-IT:

Supported UW Gmail email clients

UW Google accounts do not support Sign in with App Passwords

Google provides an option to use an account’s username and password in conjunction with a 16-digit passcode and 2-factor authentication. Please be aware that this option is not available for UW Google accounts. The only way to authenticate a third-party app using a UW Google account is to use modern authentication protocols.


If you need further assistance, please contact UW-IT at or 206-221-5000.