Digital Death Guide - Who inherits a selfie? States seek to fill privacy law gaps

Carl Szabo, senior policy counsel at NetChoice, an industry group that represents the interests of such companies as Facebook, Google and PayPal, said the revised legislation “balances the needs of the bereaved with the privacy interests of the account holders and the people with whom they corresponded.”

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CBS MoneyWatch - Say you’re dead -- who gets access to your online accounts?

“I think you’re going to start seeing more of these tools coming online,” said Carl Szabo, senior policy counsel at NetChoice, who noted that many of these services are so new and so young, that they weren’t previously thinking about end-of-life issues.

“You can’t just say: ‘Give me John Smith’s email,’” says Szabo. But, “if you make an express statement in your will to turn over everything to your significant other, and the service provider has the evidence to make sure that’s the right account, they will disclose the content,” he says.

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Mr PA Attorneys - The Laws Concerning Your Digital Legacy Are Evolving…

NetChoice has created a better proposal. NetChoice, a trade association that represents many technology companies including Facebook and Google, released an alternative proposal titled the Privacy Expectation Afterlife and Choices Act (PEAC). This model requires companies to disclose contents only when a court finds that the user is deceased, and that the account in question has been clearly linked to the deceased, among other restrictions. Read the model bill here.

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IOL - New social media law releases details of deceased

Carl Szabo, senior policy counsel at NetChoice, an industry group that represents the interests of companies such as Facebook, Google and PayPal, said the revised legislation “balances the needs of the bereaved with the privacy interests of the account holders and the people with whom they corresponded”.

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ABC News - Who Inherits a Selfie? States Seek to Fill Privacy Law Gaps

Carl Szabo, senior policy counsel at NetChoice, an industry group that represents the interests of such companies as Facebook, Google and PayPal, said the revised legislation “balances the needs of the bereaved with the privacy interests of the account holders and the people with whom they corresponded.”

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Technica.ly - Tech after death: Checking in on Delaware’s digital assets law

One side sees value in preserving privacy: “In the past two years, one of the things we have seen is service providers beginning to offer choice mechanisms,” explained Carl Szabo, NetChoice’s senior policy counsel. “Google is offering inactivity account manager [tools] and Facebook [is offering] legacy accounts. There’s also a new company called Directive Communication Systems that works with citizens and trusts and estate attorneys to create a directive in their will, that says, When I die talk to DCS about what happens to my digital accounts.”

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Salem News - Our view: Use common sense in dealing with your digital life

“We want to protect our users’ privacy because that’s what they expect, and it’s a promise we intend to keep,” said Carl Szabo, an attorney with the trade association NetChoice.

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Cullman Times - Mass. survivors clamor for access to email, social media

“We want to protect our users’ privacy because that’s what they expect, and it’s a promise we intend to keep,” said Carl Szabo, an attorney with NetChoice, a trade association of Internet companies that includes AOL, Facebook and Google.

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Miami Herald - Bill allows designation of custodians for online accounts

The new version addresses that concern by requiring that the owners of online accounts explicitly agree, either in a will or in an online tool provided by an Internet company, to allow a custodian to take over the accounts in the case of death or incapacity, said Carl Szabo of NetChoice, a trade association of Internet companies including AOL, Facebook and Google.

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Journal Times - Bill would allow custodian to take over online accounts

“The bill now addresses the chief privacy concerns we had last year,” said Carl Szabo of NetChoice, a trade association of Internet companies including AOL, Facebook and Google.

Szabo said the bill has been revised to require that owners of online accounts explicitly agree in a will or in an online tool provided by an Internet company to allow a custodian to take over the accounts in the case of death or incapacity.

Szabo said Google uses a tool called “inactivity account manager,” and Facebook offers a “legacy contact” designation tool.

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