Google has added a new feature to their Gmail services which allows users to remotely sign out and/or monitor their account activity. This feature will be most useful for those of you who use Gmail from different computers to check your mail . According to the Google article you will be able to monitor on which computer an active account remains open right through your account from any system. This is what Google says:

Your email account can contain a lot of personal information, from bank alerts to love letters. Email that, I’m sure, you don’t always want other people to see. We understand how important your Gmail accounts are to you, so we’re adding a new layer of information and control. With this new feature, you can now track your recent sessions and you can also sign yourself out remotely.

If you are anything like me, you probably sign in to Gmail from multiple computers. I, for example, occasionally sign into my Gmail account from a friend’s house when I need to check an important email. Usually I remember to sign out, but every once in a while I wonder if I really did. Now I no longer have to wonder.

At the bottom of your inbox, you’ll see information about the time of the last activity on your account and whether it’s still open in another location:

Using the above example, a quick glance at the footer while I’m at work shows that my account is indeed open in one other location. But I recognize the IP address – it’s my computer at home. Turns out I left my Gmail account open when I left home in a hurry this morning.

Your IP address, or Internet Protocol address, is a number associated with your computer when you connect to the Internet. Some of you might want to know your IP address numbers (more info on finding out your IP address below) for an extra layer of control. For others who don’t want to think about IP information, you don’t need to.

This is just one more handy Gmail feature that can assist users in keeping their information protected. You may also notice if you check your Gmail account that this information may not be present. It will only appear when one or more accounts are left open on different systems.

What do you think of this new feature? Will it be useful for you?

Comments welcome.