In the name of a security update in September this year, Google will make numerous public YouTube and Drive links unusable.
Regarding YouTube, all the unlisted videos uploaded by users after 2017 will be impacted by these changes. In contrast, in Google Drive, all the publicly shared file links will require special access to continue viewing.
Google’s New Security Update
Exposing accessible URLs of various content could sometimes lead to dangerous activities, thus should be limited to those who actually required it. Or, the user should only make them public if it’s harmless and positively serves the community.
Google may have seen the same reasons as above, or others, as it’s all set to enforce new rules for sharing Google Drive and YouTube links soon. Starting in mid-September this year, Google will be enforcing new rules that may break most of the publicly shared links.
For YouTube, the new security update will impact all the ‘Unlisted’ videos, making them private if not opted out by the user from the new rules. Unlisted YouTube videos are the ones that can be shared by anyone to anyone, with a sharable link attributed to a video posted by the user.
And if the concerned user (YouTuber) doesn’t explicitly opt-out of the new changes, their unlisted videos will be made private automatically by Google after the September update. Then, only the uploader (user) and only those who’re invited can watch them.
If not, the user can re-upload the same videos to share as before but will not be retaining the views, comments, and likes from it. Video links impacting this update will be shared after January 1st, 2017.
The case is similar to Google Drive, where all the old public links shared will be broken unless they are already opened. Unopened file links of Google Drive after the September security update will require users access only with a resource key generated while creating a file link.
Google Workspace admins can tune all the organization’s links at once for all or let individual employees tune them as desired. Google will start sending emails to those concerned starting next month and asking them to make required changes before the security update rollout.