Planning for what to do with your online accounts when you pass away might seem morbid to some, but for those looking for a way to prepare for the inevitable, Google’s new service is a godsend. In a post on the Google Public Policy Blog today, product manager Andreas Tuerk introduced a feature called “Inactive Account Manager” that can take care of all the Google accounts you leave behind after you’re gone, even if being gone only means you want to abandon your digital persona completely.
The Inactive Account Manager can be accessed from your Google Account settings page, and you can start using it by setting a timeout period for your account. If, let’s say, you choose a timeout period of 12 months, Google will wait a full year before it marks your account as inactive and even then you’ll receive a text message before the period ends just in case you’ve merely forgotten that particular account exists.
You can decide on what course you want Google to take once your account has been classified as inactive. The service can either delete your Google account completely or share all or part of your data (which includes +1s, Google+ Profiles, Contacts and Circles, Blogger, Drive, Pages and Streams, Google Voice, Picasa Web Albums, and YouTube) with trusted contacts you specify.