Saturday, April 13, 2013

Google Will - Plan for your Digital Afterlife!

Google at .NeXT

Google, the search engine giant and internet related services provider recently launched another of their ingenious product called "Digital Will". The idea behind it is simple. The user has to setup a time period of inactivity before Google decides to wipe out all of the data related to that very user or hand those over to someone according to the users' wish. The idea behind this seems to wipe out all the private data, photos and/or videos from all Google accounts after the user passes away or stop using Google account altogether.



LivesOn did it for Twitter in the March and now Google did it itself. Although the idea of passing by or death of ourselves is not such a sweet thing to plan about yet with huge amount of important documents or photos or videos or all of them to be kept inside the secrecy of our digital locker without any proper way to pass on to someone we trust doesn't sound like a plan either. The all new "Inactive Account Manager"(Link: https://www.google.com/settings/account/inactive) provides the users to do that exactly like a "Digital Will". Users may list upto 10 people who can inherit the digital property with Google account. In case of anyone who don't have anyone to leave those to that person have the option to wipe the data completely off with a given time period of inactivity. The inactivity periods can be set at intervals of 3,6,9 or 12 months. The same can be done for in case user might not be able to use the account and hold some sensitive or private data the person doesn't want to disclose and rather opt to wipe out.

Here is what said on the page when you start the setup:

What should happen to your photos, emails and documents when you stop using your account? Google puts you in control.

You might want your data to be shared with a trusted friend or family member, or, you might want your account to be deleted entirely. There are many situations that might prevent you from accessing or using your Google account. Whatever the reason, we give you the option of deciding what happens to your data.

Using Inactive Account Manager, you can decide if and when your account is treated as inactive, what happens with your data and who is notified.

Timeout period

You set a timeout period, after which your account can be classed as inactive. The timeout period starts with your last sign-in to your Google account.

Alert me

Inactive Account Manager will alert you via email or text message before the timeout period ends.

Notify contacts and share data

Add trusted contacts who should be made aware that you are no longer using your account. You can also share data with them if you like.

Optionally delete account

If you wish, instruct Google to delete your account on your behalf.

Hopefully this new settings options will help a lot of users. Give us your thoughts too.

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