Thursday January 23, 2020
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About 8,000 Facebook Users Die Daily, is Your Digital Will Ready?

Like Facebook, Instagram memorialises accounts but they can't be changed and no one can log into the profile

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Facebook, data,photos
A television photographer shoots the sign outside of Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. VOA

Facebook is just one of the several social media platforms. Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Reddit and others have flooded us, garnering millions of users.

There are over two billion people on Facebook, over 1.5 billion on WhatsApp, one billion on Instagram and 336 million on Twitter — out of which millions are from India.

Despite spending a sizable amount of time on digital platforms, few of us actually ponder over what will happen to our digital possessions once we die.

The big question is: How to make digital platforms realise the need to transfer digital assets – personal photos, videos and friendly posts — to the family once a member is no more.

“When someone dies leaving behind his email and social media accounts, the same are movable property and that being so, any heirs of the concerned person can seek right to access the same,” says Pavan Duggal, one of the nation’s top cyber law experts.

Facebook lets people choose a legacy contact — a family member or friend who can manage their account when they pass away.

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Facebook, social media. Pixabay

“Once someone lets us know that a person has passed away, we will memorialize the account,” says Facebook.

The legacy contact will be able to write a post to display at the top of the memorialized Timeline.

If someone likes, he or she may give legacy contact permission to download an archive of the photos, posts and profile information they shared on Facebook.

The legacy contact, however, will not be able to log in as the person who passed away or see that person’s private messages. Alternatively, you can let Facebook know to have the account permanently deleted after death.

A “digital heir” can preserve precious social media moments of the deceased and gift those to future generations via tools such as an external hard disk, Cloud storage, pen drive or DVDs.

The said heirs can ask the digital/social media companies to get access after giving the necessary proof.

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This photo shows a Facebook app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

“Invariably, the service provider may not be inclined to give such access without any requisite order from the court of competent jurisdiction. This could mean getting a succession certificate from a court of competent jurisdiction which could be a time-consuming process,” Duggal told IANS.

Google, which owns Gmail, YouTube and Picasa web albums, has an “Inactive Account Manager” feature which allows a user to nominate who has access to his or her information. If people don’t log on after a while, their accounts can be deleted or shared with a designated person.

According to Twitter, “In the event of the death of a Twitter user, we can work with a person authorised to act on behalf of the estate or with a verified immediate family member of the deceased to have an account deactivated.”

Twitter, however, says that “we are unable to provide account access to anyone regardless of his or her relationship to the deceased”.

Also Read- Microsoft Surface Pro 6, Surface Laptop 2 now in India

Like Facebook, Instagram memorialises accounts but they can’t be changed and no one can log into the profile.

Instagram asks that friends and relatives get in touch via email to notify them that a user has died and asks for a proof of death.

Apple iCloud and iTunes accounts are “non transferable” which means any rights to information end when a user is no more. (IANS)

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Vodafone Quits Facebook’s Libra Cryptocurrency Project: Report

The Libra project, which is still in development, aims for the launch of its first version this year

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Vodafone logo. Pixabay

Vodafone has become the latest big player who have decided to quit Facebook’s controversial Libra cryptocurrency project.

Vodafone joins PayPal, Mastercard, Visa, Mercado Pago, eBay, Stripe and Booking Holdings in withdrawing from the controversial project — and is the first company to exit after the Libra Association was formed in October last year, coindesk reported on Tuesday.

The companies left owing to concerns about heightened regulatory scrutiny.

“We can confirm that Vodafone is no longer a member of the Libra Association. Although the makeup of the Association members may change over time, the design of Libra’s governance and technology ensures the Libra payment system will remain resilient,” the Libra Association said in a statement.

“The Association is continuing the work to achieve a safe, transparent, and consumer-friendly implementation of the Libra payment system.”

Despite top-notch firms pulling out, Facebook and 20 partner organisations formally joined the digital currency Libra project in Geneva in October.

The Libra Association said that more than 1,500 entities have expressed an interest in joining the digital currency project.

facebook, servicefriend, startup, cryptocurrency, libra
Representations of virtual currency are displayed in front of the Libra logo in this illustration picture. VOA

Several US senators have opposed Facebook’s digital coin, arguing that the social networking giant has been irresponsible with user data privacy. They have even called the digital cryptocurrency Libra “delusional” and “dangerous”.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before Congress in October about Libra, defending the idea, but acknowledging the struggles left to overcome.

Libra has failed in its current form, according to the President of Switzerland.

Also Read: Digital Transactions in Delhi-NCR Grew by 235% Last Year: Razorpay

In a media interview, Swiss President and Finance Minister Ueli Maurer stated that Libra does not have a chance of being successful “because the basket of currencies that is deposited in this currency is not accepted by the national (central) banks”.

“The project in this form has actually failed,” Maurer was quoted as saying.

The Libra project, which is still in development, aims for the launch of its first version this year. (IANS)