What Happens To Your Digital Presence When You Die?

death passed away digital presence

In the past, passing away and leaving all your items and assets to your loved ones was much simpler, all one had to do was write a will. Although this might not appear so easy (especially since you have your passing in mind) the whole process is quite straightforward. Over the years, more and more people started paying and using their funds on digital items and services; this changed the whole concept of a legal will, especially since cryptocurrencies and online wallets have been introduced.

This is what a late Facebook user’s profile looks like: dead person facebook profile


This is never written as good practice, but there is no other way to do it. Write down all your usernames and passwords in an organised matter on a piece of paper in a sealed envelope labelled “Only open in the case of my death”. Although we have always been told to never write down passwords, physically on paper; I don’t see any other way of doing it. Store in a very secure place such as your solicitor’s office or the executor of your will’s home.

Digital Assets

This goes anywhere from music streaming subscriptions to an Amazon Prime subscription This will allow whomever you decide to inherit your digital assets, to access them. Don’t forget to add the login details for your digital wallets and cryptocurrency exchanges, as this can prove problematic when trying to retrieve a late family member’s cryptocurrency savings and investments. This will help your family get rid of your social media accounts or update them accordingly.

Let’s not forget about apps that you might’ve paid for from the Play store or App store. The way forward to this is (if you are using the app store) to turn on Family Sharing, this won’t transfer the rights to the apps, movies and music but will allow them to use the items you have purchased previously. Sometimes, the user account details might be needed if the content is protected by the digital rights management.

digital assets

How will they get past multi-factor authentication?

You should be using multi-factor authentication on every platform that offers it. It prevents people who might’ve gained access to your login details from logging into your account by simply inputting your username and password. The way to get around this is to use a service like Google Authenticator which you would have provided the login details prior to your death.

multifactor authentication explained

Getting over someone’s death has been made easier and harder by their digital presence and social media. You’ll have to deal with all the posts on Facebook which might make you feel better or worse.

Do you think there needs to be more information spread on what steps you should take after a loved one passes away? Tell us what you think in the comments below.