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Mother of deceased daughter loses fight to access her child’s Facebook account

The parent is trying to determine if her daughter's death was an accident or suicide.

 

Phillip Tracy

Tech

Published May 31, 2017   Updated May 23, 2021, 4:39 am CDT

A mother wanting to access her deceased daughter’s Facebook account was denied by a Berlin court Wednesday, according to the Associated Press. The mother sued Facebook for access to her daughter’s account after the 15 year-old was struck by a subway train in 2012. The mom wanted to look through her daughter’s profile to determine if her death was a result of an accident or suicide potentially caused by bullying.

The German court ruled that while it is understandable for the mother to try to discover the circumstances of her daughter’s death, granting her access to the Facebook profile would set a dangerous precedent.

According to the German newspaper Spiegel, the mother had possession of login data for her daughter until one of her daughter’s friends notified Facebook of her death. Facebook, per its policy, memorialized the girl’s account, and locked the mother out.

Facebook said it was mindful of the family’s wishes, and will attempt to find a way to help them, while respecting the privacy of third parties.

The family has the right to appeal the verdict. The lawyer said they were deeply disappointed, and will need to gather themselves to continue their emotional fight against Facebook.

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*First Published: May 31, 2017, 6:45 pm CDT