The CNIL and the delicate question of digital death

While “ every day, nearly 8 000 people registered on Facebook die in the world “, the authority recalls that in principle, “ the profile of the deceased person continues to exist “, since the platform is not informed of the situation.

However, heirs or relatives can update this profile, for example to inform third parties? Yes, responds in substance to the Commission, armed with article 85 of the Data Protection Act: “ the heirs of a deceased person proving their identity can request the person in charge of a file to take account of the death of the latter, and to update its data “, recalls the CNIL.

In the same vein, social networks organize functions allowing the death of a person to be taken into account. For example, Facebook offers relatives of the deceased to transform the account of a deceased person into a “Memorial” in order to allow his family and friends to meditate and exchange with each other, and to offer the deceased a kind. of digital eternity ”.

The CNIL post provides several links to the dedicated pages on each social network to launch this alert.

These provisions were born in 2016, at the initiative of the Lemaire law for a digital Republic. It thus provides for the establishment of a register for recording general directives relating to the storage, erasure and communication of a user’s data, after his death, as well as the designation of a third party. confidence.

Five years later, however, its implementing decree has never been published, like many others.

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