Have you ever considered what will happen to your digital life, your digital "stuff", once you're gone?
For most, the answer is no. If that is you, don't worry! In this short post we will quickly cover what your digital estate is, why it is important and how to plan for your digital estate and digital assets.
Final Security is a simple and affordable way to protect your loved ones from burden, while ensuring your final wishes and assets are seamlessly transferred to beneficiaries.
So what is in your digital estate? Take a moment to consider which devices you may own and use on a daily basis:
Now, consider all of the logins and passwords connected to these devices to access financial accounts, email accounts, and so much more. The list grows quickly.
This list is far from complete, but that gives you a picture of how immersed we all are in technology in our daily lives. You would be hard-pressed to find someone that would argue that we are living in a digital world that is being powered by technology. According to a study from Penn State University professor Bart Pursel, Ph.D, Americans are spending more than 10 hours a day on their devices. Our usage of technology is only growing, and this trend is here to stay. Your digital estate is going to grow exponentially with our continued advancement and daily integration of more and more technology.
Each of our digital devices and accounts are digital assets, and they are constantly adding to our digital footprint. Each of these carry new responsibilities that we need to account for to ensure we are protecting our loved ones, assets and our legacy.
Digital estate planning is much like traditional estate planning. It is about your family, loved ones and assets. Making sure that they are protected and accounted for. Why should you account for your Digital legacy and digital estate planning? Let's consider the following:
Organize your digital estate now, or your digital and offline life could be frozen for 18 months or more in probate, or even worse, never found.
If you have ever lost a loved one, you may have gone through the process of estate planning or settling their estate.
Estate planning can make things easier for your loved ones after you pass. You can consider how you would like each part of your life settled - accounts and debts, property, funeral arrangements, etc. Your digital property is no different.
As technology has become a main component to most aspects of our lives, we are constantly building a digital footprint. Consider all the different aspects of your daily digital life:
Each different area has different rules, processes and requirements for your loved ones to be able to access (if even possible) your accounts when you are gone. Your assets, including money, could be frozen for 18 months or longer while your loved ones are going through the probate process. Not only is this incredibly frustrating for your loved ones during this difficult time, but they will also incur significant expense via the court and lawyers. Setting up your Info Vault today can ensure your loved ones do not have additional hassles and expenses, and provide you with the peace of mind knowing that everything you want them to find, will be found.
According to AARP, it can take six months for financial institutions, credit-reporting bureaus and the Social Security Administration to receive, share or register death records. When we consider that funeral announcements are widely available, this creates the perfect scenario for criminals to strike. Your digital estate is a prime target for identity theft and other types of financial and digital theft. It is imperative to plan properly for your digital death.
Did you know that according to AARP, close to 800,000 deceased individuals are targeted for identity theft annually? That's almost 2,200 a day. With a name, address and birth date, criminals can purchase a Social Security number for as little as $10. Stealing the identity of the deceased is called ghosting, and you can learn more about it here.
Take a moment and think about all the financial, personal, sensitive or private information that you may have on your device(s):
Your unaccounted for digital footprint can cause your loved ones tremendous burden, stress and expense, all while leaving your entire life and legacy forever tarnished.
While notebooks and sticky notes are an option, they are not the best way to ensure your family, assets and wishes will be found and protected. Do you want to leave to chance that your non-digital methods will be found and up-to-date? Final Security [link: pricing] offers an easy and affordable way to protect your family from burden and to ensure your wishes and assets are found and protected.
Final Security offers a complete digital estate and digital legacy solution to protect you and your loved ones. Our services to manage your digital estate and legacy include:
Giving your family the tools they need to help them close out your estate is easier than ever, thanks to Final Security. We provide a safe and secure platform to store your important files, and our platform offers document builders and templates to make sure you've thought of everything. Within five minutes, you can create your account, and begin adding basic documents to your Info Vault, which gets passed on to your beneficiaries upon your passing.
According to AARP, it can take six months for financial institutions, credit-reporting bureaus and the Social Security Administration to receive, share or register death records. When you consider that timeframe and that cybercrime is now more profitable than the global illegal drug trade, your digital estate is the perfect target for criminals. We need to protect and organize our digital lives in preparation of our digital death.
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