Google launches tool to manage online presence after you die

Google has created many products that are indispensable to Georgia residents. From Gmail to Gchat to the soon-to-be-departed Google Reader, its products and services make day-to-day life in the 21st century easier and more convenient.

Now, Google has launched a product that makes it easier to determine what happens to your electronic accounts after you die.

Think of Inactive Account Manager as a de facto last will and testament for your online presence.

Here is how it works: If, after a certain amount of time, a user has not used Picasa, Google Plus, YouTube, Gmail or any other Google products or services, Inactive Account Manager kicks in. It either wipes away all your data or gives access to that data to a predetermined person.

At first blush, you might think this is not all that important. But think about all your personal emails, videos and other information. Even if it's nothing terribly intimate, you probably don't want that just drifting around on the Internet.

While it sounds as thought this could be a useful product, keep in mind that Inactive Account Manager does not take care of everything. Your iTunes account, for example, isn't covered. Nor is your Facebook account.

Planning for the inevitable can be very difficult, largely because there are so many things to think about and prepare for. If you are interested in preparing for the future, you might consider having a conversation with an estate planning attorney.  That attorney will be able to help you make sure you have considered everything and made appropriate plans.

Source: CBS Pittsburgh, "Google launches digital afterlife manager," April 13, 2013

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