Here in McKinney, we have had a number of unfortunate suicides accomplished by jumping off of our super high overpasses recently built.  The last attempt wasn’t entirely successful.

Admit it! What is the first thing that comes to mind?  If you are morbidly curious, you google their name and look for their Facebook page.  I guarantee the TV and newspaper reporters do.

So who takes over that Facebook page?  Friends?  Relatives?  The police?   How would they know the password?

In our family, a cousin lost a lengthy battle to cancer.  Her Facebook page stands as a reminder to those who loved her.  People post happy birthday wishes and other loving postings year after year, just like people placing flowers on her headstone at the cemetery.

This brings up an important point – how do you properly transfer access to all your online stuff to those who will handle your business after you are gone?

After someone dies, there are bills to pay, sometimes businesses with online tools to access, and on and on.  If the people left do not have access, wow, what a pain.  What a crappy way to be remembered, not for a lifetime of goodness, but for having to clean up a digital mess you may have left behind

Imagine all the passwords and sites you have created logins for.

Personally, I use a tool called Lastpass.  This provides one password access to all my sites.  I am not endorsing them, there are a lot of services like them, just saying it is a good way for me to give the executor of my estate access to ALL of my passwords and logins because with one login using one password, the executor can get into all sites.  All I have to do is give them that one single password.

This Kiplinger article discusses some of what’s legal (and maybe illegal) about accessing someone’s online sites without proper authority: http://www.kiplinger.com/article/retirement/T021-C000-S004-protect-digital-assets-after-your-death.html

The future is now!

It’s important that your digital life be preserved.  Make sure your will and related documents not only designate someone as executor, but everything that person needs to access your house, cars, etc. and yes, your online passwords too!

So?  Which is more important?  Facebook, or that fancy headstone in the cemetery?