Google’s New Feature Will Prepare Your Accounts For Your Virtual Afterlife

April 15, 2013  |  

A bit morbid, but when you die, your virtual life lives on unless you make provisions for all your social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter to be shut down? And try as they might even relatives can’t close your accounts unless you leave them all your log in information.

Google might have come up to a solution for this dilemma, which has even baffled Congress. The company has created something called the “Inactive Account Manager” and they claim it is new way to manage your digital afterlife. According to The Los Angeles Times, the Inactive Account Manager allows users to specify what they’d like to have happen to their data after they die or become inactive for an extended period of time, say after three, six, nine, or 12 months.  And don’t worry about being shut down without your knowledge. Google will send a text message and an email before taking action.

“We hope that this new feature will enable you to plan your digital afterlife –- in a way that protects your privacy and security — and make life easier for your loved ones after you’re gone,” Google product manager Andreas Tuerk said in a blog post.

Of course, it is only available for Gmail, Google+, Drive, Picasa, and other Google services. But perhaps if the manager works other social media networks will pick up on the idea. The Inactive Account Manager can be found on your Google Account settings page.

Google allows you to customize your shutdowns as well. “You can have different directives for different products. You can delete all those cat videos you viewed on YouTube but save your family photographs for posterity on Picasa,” writes The Times.

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