© Google/Lemon squeezer
It is quite rare that the disappearance of a feature leads to the permanent disappearance of important files on your Android smartphone. However, this is what is about to happen on certain Android smartphones in February 2024. The problem only concerns smartphones purchased or located in India.
Indeed, last year, Google partnered with the Indian government's eGovernance department to deliver a major change to the local version of its Files application . A new secure tab “Important” lists all sensitive documents such as photocopies of passport, ID card 8217;identity, or driving license among other examples.
Google removes a Files tab from some smartphones… and your important files it contains
Files uses machine learning directly on the device to review the files, determine which ones are sensitive, and move them to this tab where they are encrypted and protected by the security mode defined on the smartphone. We weren't talking about a beta feature then… therefore it was reasonable to think that the function would eventually be found on smartphones around the world.
And yet, exactly the opposite seems to be happening. The latest update of the application is accompanied by a message announcing the disappearance of the tab and the permanent deletion of the files it contains. starting February 15, 2024.
“The Important tab on Files will no longer be available from February 15 February 2024. Your documents saved in the Important tab will be permanently deleted from Files after this date”, explains the firm's message. Notifications are also pushed to the smartphones concerned so that users do what is necessary to recover the files contained in the tab before their deletion.
If you are using an Android smartphone located in its settings in India, you are affected by this change. However, it is not possible to simply move the files contained in this tab to another folder. According to Google, the only way to recover these files is to individually click the share button before creating a copy that you save elsewhere in the smartphone's memory.
If you are looking for an effective way to protect files on your smartphone, we advise you to purchase an antivirus suite, for example which includes access to Bitdefender Mobile Security for Android &# 8211; with an agent allowing you to lock certain applications such as Files and Photos.
- If your smartphone was purchased or is located in India, be careful: the Important tab will disappear from the Files application, and with it all the files that were automatically moved there.
- Google gives no explanation for this sudden decision, to say the least, just one year after the official launch of the feature.
- If you wish to keep a copy of these files, which can be a photocopy of your passport, identity card, or even driving license, you must go to the tab before February 15, 2024 and create a new copy of each file, one by a.
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