What Happens to Us After Our Death?

Ok, perhaps I’ve bitten off more than I can chew with that question. So how about an easier one…

What Happens to Our Social Media After Our Death?

THIS I can deal with!

Most social media sites have some mechanism in place to deal with your data or account in the event of your death. If you do not configure these ahead of time, it is possible that nobody will be able to either access your data or take your account down. As configuring how social media should deal with your accounts takes only a minute or two, now is. a great time to do so.

Apple and iCloud Account Recovery and Legacy Contact

Apple recently introduced Account Recovery and Legacy Contact with iOS 15 and macOS 12. These features work together to ensure that a trusted loved one or friend has the ability to manager your Apple ID and iCloud accounts. To configure this:

Trusted Phone Numbers

  1. Open System Settings > Apple ID > Password & Security. The Password & Security widow opens.
  2. In the Trusted Phone Numbers area, add the phone number(s) that can be used to verify your identity when signing in on a different device.

Account Recovery

  1. Tap the Account Recovery Manage… The Account Recovery window opens:
  2. Tap the + button, then follow the onscreen instructions to add contact information for someone you trust.
  3. Select the Recovery Key Manage button, then follow the onscreen instructions to create a recovery key.
  4. When complete, tap the Done

Legacy Contact

  1. Select the Legacy Contact Manage button, then follow the onscreen instructions to add contact information for someone to access your account after your death.
  2. When complete, tap the Done button.

Automatic Verification

  1. Enable Automatic Verification to help bypass CAPTCHA’s.
  2. Close System Settings.

Trusted Phone Numbers

Used to verify your identity when signing in on a different device or browser.

  1. In the Trusted phone numbers field, tap Edit.
  2. Enter at least one phone number that can send you text or voice messages, then tap Done.

Facebook Memorialization Settings

When you are no longer around to look after your Facebook site, what happens to your data? Facebook has you covered with its Memorialization Settings.

  1. Open a browser to your Facebook page.
  2. Tap on your avatar in the upper right corner > Settings & Privacy > Settings. Verify the heading is General profile settings.
  3. In the Memorialization settings area, tap Edit.
  4. Configure to your taste, then Save.

Google Digital Legacy

Perhaps Google makes the process the easiest of all.

  1. Open a browser to Google Inactive Account Manager at https://myaccount.google.com/u/2/inactive, then follow the on-screen instructions to complete this section detailing what happens to your account should it become inactive.

LinkedIn Memorialize Account

LinkedIn takes a more “legalized’ approach, more akin to providing bank account access.

If You Are Not Authorized to Act on Behalf of the Deceased LinkedIn Member

  1. Open a browser to https://www.linkedin.com/help/linkedin/ask/TS-RDMLP
  2. Complete the online form, then tap the Submit button.

If You Are Authorized to Act on Behalf of the Deceased LinkedIn Member

  1. Gather the required forms and information:
  • Deceased member’s full name
  • URL to their LinkedIn profile
  • Deceased member’s email address
  • Date of deceased member’s passing
  • Copy of death certificate

You will need one of the following to show you have the authority to act on behalf of the deceased member:

  • Letters of Administration issued by a court
  • Letters of Testamentary issued by a court
  • Letters of Representation issued by a court
  • Other court order appointing the requestor as an authorized representative for the deceased member’s estate
  1. Open a browser to https://www.linkedin.com/help/linkedin/ask/ts-rmdmlp
  2. Complete the online form, then tap the Submit button.

Access Microsoft Accounts After Death

It is far easier to allow a trusted loved one or friend to access your Microsoft accounts (Outlook.com, OneDrive, etc.) if they have your account credentials. For security and privacy concerns, you don’t need to provide the credentials during your life. Instead, your credentials can be provided to them as part of your Last Will and Testament.

However, Microsoft has mechanisms in place should that information not be available.

Time Frame Concerns

If your Microsoft account has not been accessed in two years, it will be automatically closed, and all data deleted.

Access to Microsoft Accounts Without Knowledge of Credentials

This is where the lawyers and courts come in. Microsoft must be formally served with a subpoena or court order to consider if account access will be granted. For more information, please visit https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/office/accessing-outlook-com-onedrive-and-other-microsoft-services-when-someone-has-died-ebbd2860-917e-4b39-9913-212362da6b2f

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