If you were to pass away today, would your loved ones be able to access your online bank accounts? What about your Facebook account? We found a recent story that provides a helpful checklist for getting your digital assets in order.
1. Create a List of Everything
- Make a comprehensive list of all your online accounts. Don’t list your passwords for security purposes
2. Email Access Is Critical
- Find a way to give your most trusted beneficiary access to your email accounts. It may surprise you to learn investment accounts are easier to gain access to than email accounts if you don’t have the password. There have been lawsuits from relatives of a deceased person trying to access their Facebook or email accounts and the relatives often lost in court.
3. Make Documents Easy To Locate
- Many people today scan and store their important documents (like a Will, Advance Directive, Trust, deed to their home, birth certificates, passports, bank, investment statements etc.) on sites like Dropbox in PDF files.
- Be sure to keep the originals in a secure location.
4. Pass On Your Passwords
There are several ways to save passwords so they’re accessible and secure.
- A paper file – This method works but it has drawbacks. Every time you change a password, you have to update the paper. And if you store it in your home, you could leave yourself liable to fraud from friends or family. I may sound implausible but it does happen.
- A digital file – You can save your passwords on a hard drive, thumb drive or on a cloud service like Dropbox. But remember to update your document each time a password changes. An out-of-date list is useless.
- Use a password service – Websites (like LastPass) will store all your digital assets. They typically require a death certificate before they release the information to whomever you designate.
Read the story here.