A New Google Feature Lets You Decide What Happens To Your Data When You Die [Updates]

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Online social profiles typically do not offer enough customizability to help users prepare for death. Of course, you can trust Google to pick up the gauntlet: the Inactive Account Manager is a brand new Google account feature that can help you keep your data out of the wrong hands when you die.

In summary, the Inactive Account Manager allows you to tell Google what to do with your information after your account has been unused for a certain period of time. With that said, Google really hasn’t beat around the bush while explaining the true purpose of this new feature.

“Not many of us like thinking about death — especially our own. But making plans for what happens after you’re gone is really important for the people you leave behind,” said a Google Public Policy Blog post. “So today, we’re launching a new feature that makes it easy to tell Google what you want done with your digital assets when you die or can no longer use your account.”

While not yet available for Google Apps, regular users can determine the fate of their Gmail messages and data from other Google services if their account becomes inactive for three, six, or 12 months. Possible actions include the total deletion of information, or even the ability to have it sent to trusted contacts who are connected to your Google account’s services. As a built-in safety feature, Google will send an email or a text message to the user before the timeout period ends.

Do you think the Inactive Account Manager is a good idea? Will you make use of it?

Source: Google Public Policy Blog

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Comments (30)
  • Basher Khan

    Very good idea!

  • Marianne Martin

    I do think this is a good idea. It is also smart on googles part. We don’t know what the future holds and this is one way for a clean-up to be done.

  • frank

    i think that you should spend your efforts trying to make it hard for google to collect data on you in the first place.

    step 1 i think would be.. not having a gmail account. or using chrome, android, or any other google products.

    second set firefox as default browser, and install add-on ‘Ghostery’ (blocks trackers) and install add-on NoScript (blocks scripts)

    thirdly..set homepage to https://www.startpage.com

    fourthly… get smart in general!

    power to the people!

  • John Jameson

    Pretty Cool:)

  • John Jameson

    I Suppose thats cool, but most elderly or seriously ill people probably won’t use
    computers. But that is still a cool thing:)

    • Joshua Lockhart

      John, you’ll end up being an elderly person eventually! It’s just this generation.

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Affiliate Disclamer

This review may contain affiliate links, which pays us a small compensation if you do decide to make a purchase based on our recommendation. Our judgement is in no way biased, and our recommendations are always based on the merits of the items.

For more details, please read our disclosure.