Passing on Passwords


Privacy and password security is a major concern for many people these days. Everywhere we turn someone is trying to invade our privacy or gain access to our accounts.

One way we have swayed or thwarted these attacks is to password protect our accounts and other important information. Over time, the increased use of passwords to protect our information has caused an increase in password security and complexity—making it that much harder to make AND remember such complex passwords for all of your accounts.

This leads many to reduce the security of their passwords by using the same password or by using a password that is too simple. This ultimately leaves users with vulnerable credentials that are not very effective against attacks. However, there is a way to remember all your complex passwords for all accounts, and that is to simply write them down on paper! This is more secure then placing them on your computer in a computer document or using an app. These can still leave you susceptible to cyber attacks.

There is a common misconception that writing down your passwords will leave you vulnerable, but that is no longer the case. In today’s world everyone should consider making a “digital will” to help their loved ones get access to their account in the event of their absence or passing.

When preparing a will, many of us focus on our monetary and physical assets. But what about the number of  online accounts people have today? A “digital will” can simply be a list of all your digital property. Include the website name, web address, username, password, and any other relevant information like security questions and answers, PIN numbers or security codes, and account numbers. This will go along way for those in charge of settling your affairs, or in helping you settle the affairs of someone you care for.

Who Needs a Digital Will?

With so much of our lives managed online now it is arguable that everyone needs to set up some form of digital will. Whether it’s paying the bills, managing investments, sending emails or socializing with friends and family on social media,  we have countless online accounts.

Every account or business has different policies on getting access to an account without access to the email or password associated with the account, so imagine the stress this could place on your loved ones or yourself.

This is where a digital will can make all the difference. You may need a digital will if:

  • You have a significant online presence and want to ensure it’s handled according to your wishes.
  • You have a significant other who needs to continue managing day-to-day life in your absence, like paying the mortgage or bills.
  • You run a business and have passwords to critical company accounts that need to be settled or handed off should something happen.
  • You are the caregiver for other aging parents or close relatives accounts.
  • You manage your financial assets online and need to ensure someone you trust can settle your accounts.

Prioritize Your Digital Will Today

Creating a digital will may not be your preferred way to spend a Saturday afternoon, but by creating one you are saving your loved one time and stress. Once you have a process in place to record you digital accounts it will be easier to keep track and update. Get started on your digital will today!

Be sure that whoever you designate as your trusted contact knows how to find and use this digital inventory. To help you get started we’ve attached a sheet to help you organize and keep track of all you accounts.

 

Get Started Today!

https://shobe.dev.immense.net/app/uploads/2018/03/Worksheet.pdf

 

SOURCE: “Preparing a Digital Will for Your Passwords.” The LastPass Blog, 28 Oct. 2016,
                       “Passing on Your Password.”  Raymond James, 1 Jan. 2017, pp. 1–4.

Posted March 27, 2018 in Life Events News Articles Planning