What are digital assets?
Digital assets include e-mail accounts, online banking, online investments, social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter etc.), online purchasing/selling accounts (e-Bay, Amazon etc.), data stored on Pc’s, tablets, laptops, mobile phones and blogs just to name a few.
Digital assets tend to have little value but some may have significant value or sentimental value.
What would happen to these assets when we die?
Much of the information stored on computers, hard drives and online accounts are user name and password protected. Unless prior arrangements are made, family members or your Executors/Administrators may not be able to access these which leave the information unobtainable.
Practical steps to put in place
Planning for your digital estate is similar to planning for other assets.
- You need to make create a comprehensive inventory of your digital assets. Make a list of your user names, passwords and security questions for each digital asset.
- Make a Will – your Executors are empowered by the Court to administer and realise all assets including your digital assets.
- Safely store these details with your Will or in a safe place so that your Executors have access to this information on your death.
- Maintain and update the information on a regular basis.
- Provide instructions for what you want to happen to your digital assets i.e. if you want it to continue, someone to take it over or should it be closed down.
It may take some time for you to get the relevant information together. If you don’t do this, your family will not know where to start and could miss something valuable. The more you do now to put things in order, the easier it will be for your family on your death.