Tech Talk: What happens to our online data when we die?

Chances are, you were not hacked if you received this message, nor are you being impersonated on Facebook, and no fraudulent friend requests got sent.(MONTCO.Today file photo.)

“Digital death” is one of the biggest challenges facing the tech community. Where does our online data go when we’re gone? Who gets our Bitcoins? Should our social media accounts be preserved or shut down?

Even if we were to settle upon a reliable system for “passing on” control of our digital lives, applying real-world solutions to these digital challenges might not always work, writes Kieran Yates at

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The case of British woman Hollie Gazzard was particularly notable. In 2015, the 20-year-old was tragically murdered by her boyfriend, of whom she had posted pictures which were still visible on her profile page – pulled in automatically by Facebook’s algorithm – a whole year after her death.

After initially refusing to take them down, Facebook eventually bowed to public pressure and petitions and deleted the photos. While this appears to show the company is prepared to respond – albeit slowly – to real world anomalies, it’s worth noting it still continues to resolve such issues on a case-by-case basis with no guarantee over how long it will take.

To read  the full story, click here.

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