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Who will keep your Facebook profile up to date when you die?

Facebook has announced a new feature which will enable a friend or relative to maintain your account after you’re dead.

Legacy Contact, as it has been called, will let a user bequeath control of their account to someone else after they’ve shuffled off to the great social network in the sky.

Up until now the most practical option for relatives after a user has passed away is to memorialise their Facebook page, effectively freezing it and turning it into a shrine. But now they will be able to maintain a semi-active Facebook profile, if they’re previously named by the profile’s owner.

Facebook Legacy Contact screenshots

A legacy contact will be able to download an archive of photos and other content, post status updates, pin posts and even accept friend requests – allowing you to become even more popular after you die.

The person won’t have access to the deceased’s whole profile though.

The contact will be able to control the account through their own, rather than logging in to it individually, and they won’t be given unrestricted access which would entitle them to view things like private messages. They will however have the option to download the majority of the contents relating to your profile, such as public photos and photo albums.

'Remembering' the deceased on Facebook

If a user chooses to name a legacy contact, their profile will show the word ‘remembering’ above their name after they have died. Alternatively, you can choose to have your account deleted upon your demise, ruling out the need for any further effort, whilst simultaneously curtailing any post-death revenue options for Mr Zuckerberg and his chums.

If you want to name a legacy contact for your Facebook account, you just have to head into your settings menu and hit Security, then Legacy Contact. From there you’ll be able to nominate your chosen party and decide what level of control they’ll have when you’ve shuffled off this mortal coil.

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