Google is bringing Twitter-like blue checks to Gmail

4 May 2023

Image: © PixieMe/

An upgrade on the BIMI standard adopted in 2021, the blue checks are available to all Gmail users.

Google has introduced a blue checkmark next to the names of verified brands using Gmail to help users identify legitimate accounts and avoid scams.

This is not the first time the search giant has tried to reflect authenticated accounts visually to end users.

In 2021, Google introduced Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI) in Gmail, which requires senders to use strong authentication and to verify their brand logo to be able to display it as an avatar in emails.

The BIMI standard allows organisations to have their logos appear next to authenticated emails in a user’s inbox. Google first announced a pilot of the feature in 2020, having joined the industry working group in 2019.

Now, Gmail is upgrading that feature to give verified accounts a Twitter-style blue checkmark next to their name to help end users distinguish between legitimate senders and impersonators.

Email scams, especially in the wake of ChatGPT, are ubiquitous and pose a serious threat to online safety. They can be used to steal identities, trick people into revealing sensitive financial information and even spread disinformation.

“Strong email authentication helps users and email security systems identify and stop spam, and also enables senders to leverage their brand trust,” Google wrote in a blogpost yesterday (3 May).

“This increases confidence in email sources and gives readers an immersive experience, creating a better email ecosystem for everyone.”

Available to all users with a Gmail account, whether personal or business, the new blue check feature started rolling out yesterday and can take up to three days to be visible. Instructions for setting it up are in the Admin Help section of Google Workspace.

Google’s decision to introduce blue checks for Gmail accounts comes at an interesting time. Twitter has experienced bedlam in the past few weeks after CEO Elon Musk decided to scrap blue checks for legacy users last month, including for some high-profile users such as the Pope.

However, days later, blue checks began reappearing on the accounts of many celebrities and brands even if they hadn’t subscribed to Twitter Blue.

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Vish Gain is a journalist with Silicon Republic