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Tools for Managing an Online Life
According to Life Insurance Finder.com.au, the following social media and online accounts have policies which outline what will happen to your account when you die:
Twitter allows users to request that an account be deleted or memorialized when a friend or loved one has passed on. Users can get in touch with Twitter to either completely delete the account or obtain a permanent backup of the deceased user’s public tweets. Users will need to provide their name and contact details, their relationship to you, your Twitter username and a link to or copy of your obituary.
Facebook also allows users to request that an account be deleted or memorialized when a friend or loved one has passed.
Once the request is approved by Facebook the account’s privacy is restricted to friends only and certain sensitive information is removed.
The profile and wall remain active for friends to post memories and condolences. Upon request from a close family member Facebook will remove a deceased user’s profile entirely. Users will need to provide their name and contact details and proof of their relationship to you.
MySpace will cancel a deceased user’s account if they are sent proof of death.
LinkedIn will also close your account if they receive confirmation of your death.
YouTube allows your heir or power of attorney control of your account and all of the content.
Google+ and Gmail will provide account information to family members at their discretion.
Yahoo and Flickr sites have a strict digital death policy where, upon receiving a copy of your death certificate they will permanently delete all of your accounts and their contents meaning no one but you can ever access them.
Hotmail will send a copy of all email messages and a current contacts list to your family, before closing the account on request. While this can make it easier for your family to notify all of your contacts of your death, keep in mind this also means your family will be able to read all of your private emails, which may not only include revelations about you, but could also reveal personal information about others. eBay will close an account and delete all customer details from the
eBay database after receiving a copy of your death certificate
PayPal will need to view a death certificate before closing an account, and if there is money in the account a cheque will be issued in the name of the ac- count holder.
Match.com will block the account of a user who has died so that it is no longer visible on the site and your power of attorney will need to contact Match.com to retrieve account information.
An eHarmony account will remain open until a family member or power of attorney contacts the site at which point eHarmony will close the account
Record important information about your digital life Make a list of all your social media accounts (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, You Tube) including username and password so that your family can access them in the event of your death.