This section of your digital footprint covers everything from apps and online accounts for utilities to banking/credit cards, from digital news and subscriptions to personal medical records. Probably, these are the internet sites you visit most often.
The essential security rule for your digital identity is to record your login, password, security questions, and answers in one document that can be accessed by a trusted person in case something happens to you.
Access to electronic devices is just the first step to navigating an online presence - either yours or if you are the Executor/Executrix or Person-in-Charge (PIC) for someone who has passed.
In an emergency, you may need to access medical information or at a minimum, a doctor's name, allergy information, or a list of medications.
The fastest way to access all security information - opening files most easily - is if you or the deceased has a password app or electronic password vault. That type of program stores and updates other online apps, accounts, and passwords in one place.
With this type of online account, the process of securing or closing an online presence is more streamlined, provided you have the initial code to unlock a mobile phone or computer. This service stores, syncs, updates, and secures most (or all) of your sites and apps for easier accessibility.
Be sure someone you trust knows how to open your phone or computer, and as appropriate, the login for your password vault or app!
Think of what you use your phone or computer for - an online wallet, social media, online banking, online investment account(s), credit card accounts, magazine or news subscriptions, social security or disability benefits, medical prescriptions, online personal services, ride sharing, gym memberships, or loyalty programs (like Uber, airline mileage, garage or gass apps, eBay, Stitch Fix, pet supplies, or Peloton).
If you do not have a password app that stores all of your logins, passwords, and security questions/answers, then you need to have a file in one place (written or digital), so that in the case of an emergency, a trusted person can find the file and provide the PIC with the details to access the security of your digital footprint.
Your online wallet maybe as diverse as the automatic refills that are debited from your checking account or recurring charges to a credit card.
As examples, Apple Wallet, eBay, Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts, PayPal, and Venmo accounts have logins and security codes. These apps and online accounts should be monitored or closed as appropriate.
And don't forget all the E-cards (for holiday cards, online Event registration (like Eventbrite), E-invitation (for parties and mass mailings), and surveys (Survey Monkey) that someone may use.
These sites may not be as active as some of the other online accounts, but they should also be disabled and deleted.
Don't immediately close anything
Monitor critical accounts for sign of hacking or security breaches.
Watch incoming email and be careful
If the emailer's address looks funny - don't open it! It might be a phishing attack to gain access to the deceased's account. The hacker may have learned of the death from an obituary or local notice.
If you are the Executor or Executrix or PIC, take your time closing accounts
After checking in Financial Details (button above), review security suggestions in Real Estate as well (click button below)
Remember, your digital footprint has multiple parts - depending on your online activity.
Everything will need to be secured, disabled, or deleted on your passing or if you are responsible for the online presence of someone who has passed.
MAKE SURE SOMEONE KNOWS HOW TO ACCESS YOUR DEVICES (PHONE, COMPUTER, TABLET, ETC.) AND APPS/ONLINE SECURITY CODES!
Devices: from phones to home security systems to smart appliances
Representative examples, but certainly not all:
Again, some examples but not all:
Step-by-step guide to what to do first. Calls, Paperwork, Care Arrangements, etc.
Detailed guide to prepare or fulfill final wishes
Where do you start? Physical remains, funeral options, death certificates, memorial services and more...
Next hurdle - how to handle financial records and accounts
Key reminders on securing residences - owned or rented, apartments or houses - after a loved one's death
Magazine Subscriptions, memberships and more...
Funny, helpful and special stories that others have shard to help you through the process
For each section, dowload and personalize a pdf checklist