If I Die Young, Bury Me In Facebook

Lay me down in a bed of email…

Or maybe not? As this article would indicate, different companies have varying policies as to how accommodating they might be with your loved ones’ email and social media accounts after death. Apps like “If I Die” will continue to flourish as people crave the kind of certainty and security that they have in their “offline” affairs. The current state of online affairs is more of a mixed bag. Facebook will allow you to use a profile as a memorial, whereas Yahoo is not nearly as forgiving. Sometimes, you may even need to go to court in order to force companies to preserve important information.

It used to be even five years ago that such matters were not covered by formal policies, and that there was often little or nothing that a person could rely on if faced with such a problem. I anticipate that as this issue receives more attention, there will be an industry-wide standard for dealing with deceased loved ones’ social media and email accounts, and within the next five years or so there will be almost as much certainty in our online matters as those on paper. Of course, this security can’t come soon enough- many of us conduct the majority of our lives on computers, and there is no justification for the possible loss of that data.

Just remember, even if companies don’t prove to be as progressive as I think they will be, there is a way to avoid every policy they could adopt. Just put your passwords and other important information with your will, with any instructions you need to give your loved ones in the event of your demise.

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