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An Ultimate Guide to planning your Digital Legacy

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Legacy is the amount or property left to someone in a Will. It is all about life and living – be it your grandma’s favorite brooch, your uncle’s heirloom watch or a family recipe that has been passed down the generations – all these are Legacies.

In the past few years, we have seen a considerable growth in internet users. From social media profiles to cloud storage to crypto wallets, most of our routines, investments, and activities have gone digital. These Digital Assets of sentimental or financial value are collectively known as Digital Legacy.

If a family heirloom can be passed down generations, can the Digital Assets too?

What is Digital Legacy?

Dealing with your Digital Assets after death is becoming more forefront in the minds of people. We often read stories of tragic circumstances where protecting Digital Assets after death could have prevented heartache for a family. Talking about Digital Legacy is now a necessity.

A Digital Legacy is the digital information left behind by a deceased person. This might include social media profiles, online conversations, photos, videos, and websites. It holds sentimental rather than monetary value to the family members of the deceased. You can think of Digital Legacy as your personal identity that lives even after you die.

Moreover, it is an opportunity to specify what actions should be taken on your different online accounts, be it social media or documents stored in your digital clouds.

What is the importance of a Digital Legacy Plan?

Your Digital Legacy consists of everything you do online. This means if you have a social media account (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google Plus, or Instagram), it forms a part of your Digital Legacy. But, Digital Legacy is more than just social media accounts.

Digital Legacy includes all your Digital Assets such as photos, videos, graphics, certificates and documents, cloud storage, and crypto wallets.

But, what happens to your Digital Legacy after your passing? To protect your Digital Legacy after your death, you need to start planning for it. This is where a Digital Legacy Plan comes in handy. Having a Digital Legacy Plan ensures your Digital Assets are secure forever. Additionally, it can even support your family to cope up with your death and remember your digital life.

How to create a Digital Legacy Plan?

A Digital Legacy is more than just photos and videos. Creating a Digital Legacy means collecting all the documents that remind your family members of your achievements, memorable events, progression in life, and everything in between.

Documents to include in your Digital Legacy:

  • Birth certificate
  • Photos and videos
  • College degrees and any other
  • educational/professional certificates
  • Information regarding
  • hobbies and other interests
  • Career achievements
  • Medical and end-of-life care details
  • Cryptocurrencies

What is Digital Legacy Planning?

We all have a Digital Life which we leave behind. This means our Digital Assets( social media accounts, photos, videos, personal files in cloud storage) are vulnerable after our death. Thus, Digital Legacy Planning ensures your Digital Assets are secure even after your passing.

Digital Legacy Planning includes instructions for what should be done with your Digital Assets and who can access them after your death. This ensures your privacy is intact and your Digital Informations are secure after your demise.

Why is Digital Legacy Planning important?

Digital Legacy Planning is becoming critical today. We share pictures and videos on Facebook, Instagram, and several social media platforms. We also have online bank accounts, online shopping accounts, and subscription accounts. We have cloud storage of our personal documents, achievements, certificates, and photos. They could have significant sentimental value and some could have considerable financial value as well.

Thus, planning Digital Legacy is important to secure your digital information and help you decide what you want to do with your Digital Assets after your death.

Moreover, Digital Legacy Planning will help your family to hold on to a piece of your life even when you are gone. Especially, in this pandemic, you can leave behind a trail of memories for your family, which will provide them peace of mind even at their worst.

If you are someone who is fond of sharing memories and experiences with loved ones then make arrangements so they can revisit these memories whenever they miss you. Digital Legacy can help your family in their grieving process positively. Your loved ones will be forever grateful for this gift you provided for them and future generations.

Benefits Of Digital Legacy Planning

Digital Legacy Planning comes with multiple benefits such as:

  • Getting your Digital Life in order.
  • Avoiding stressful situations where your family can’t access your online accounts.
  • Helping your future generation to get familiar with their ancestors.
  • Supporting your family even after your death.
  • Preparing for your digital death.
  • Having control over your Digital Afterlife (leaving instructions for your online accounts)

Things to remember while creating a Digital Legacy Plan

Here are a few things to keep in mind while planning your Digital Legacy.

  • Backup all data such as photos, videos, important documents, etc from your cloud storage and onto a hard drive. This can secure your Digital Data for your loved ones. Cloud storage services often terminate access after death.
  • Leverage Digital Legacy Planning tools offered by Digital Account providers, such as Facebook‘s legacy features and Google’s Inactive Account Manager.
  • Most importantly, have an open conversation with your executor and family members while planning your Digital Legacy.

What are the challenges of Digital Legacy Planning?

Some of the challenges you might face while Digital Legacy Planning are:

  • Hard time recalling and documenting all your Digital Assets.
  • Choosing the right Digital Executor
  • Digital Legacy Policies of some Digital Platforms such as Amazon doesn’t allow you to pass on Ebooks and music purchased through their site
  • Sensitive topic to discuss with your loved ones.

Why do you need to preserve your Digital Legacy?

Your Digital Legacy includes all the information you shared online- from birthday party photos to professional online course certificates. So, your Digital Legacy can be memories you leave behind for your family or a mark you leave in your workspace.

Preserving your Digital Legacy will ensure these memories and accomplishments are not forgotten. Your Digital Legacy can even help a family member who has a serious illness or is suffering from memory loss. These digital memories can help them trigger their memories.

Thus, preserving your Digital Legacy will not only make your digital life immortal but help your loved ones in more ways than you can imagine such as helping them through difficult times.

Are you concerned about your Digital Afterlife?

Considering the amount of time we spend online, it’s obvious to be concerned about your Digital Afterlife. It is best to take charge of your Digital Afterlife and create a Digital Legacy Plan to secure your Digital life.

We share almost everything on our social media pages and store our important documents in cloud storage. But, what happens to the life we created on different Digital Platforms? This question can be bothersome for most of us.

This is why preserving our Digital Legacy is vital. It can protect your Digital Afterlife and secure your personal information.

How is Covid19 changing the way we discuss death?

The pandemic has hit each and every individual, making the uncertainty of life quite clear. An untimely death can be very hard for your loved ones. Thus, Digital Legacy can help your family to cope up with your sudden demise. For instance, someone close to you suddenly passed away due to Covid. Then what happens to their Digital Assets? Are their loved ones given access to their accounts and what do they want to do with their Digital Presence after their death?

In situations like these Digital Legacy Planning will help your family manage your Digital Assets or even memorialize them. End-of-life planning is not exclusively meant for old age. COVID has changed the perception of death.

Now, death knocks untimely, and for some even after COVID recovery incapacitation prevails. Death cannot be prevented and it can happen anytime to anyone due to COVID-19. Thus, it’s best to be prepared.

How to manage your Digital Legacy?

Here are a few things that will help you manage your Digital Legacy.

  • Inventory for your Digital Assets
  • Name a trusted Digital Executor
  • Make sure your legal documents address your Digital Legacy
  • Keep your Digital Legacy Plan updated

How to plan your Digital Death?

Death is unpredictable especially due to COVID we are all suffering from the loss of loved ones. Thus, it is best to be prepared for your Digital Death. Planning your Digital Death will include talking to your family members about it.

You can even create an End-of-life checklist to manage everything related to your Digital Death. Planning your Digital Death will lift a huge burden off your family. It will not only ensure the security of your Digital Life but also bring peace to your family.

How to talk about Digital legacy planning with family
members?

Legacy Planning means we are preparing our family members for the unforeseen future. So, sit down with your family members and have a talk. Although it is a difficult topic to discuss, you need to tell them why it’s important for you and how you want to be remembered.

For instance, you can express your concerns related to your Digital Assets after your death. You can help them understand how Digital Legacy Planning can protect your digital information and prevent identity theft even after you die.

You can also make them understand how it will help them after you are gone. Digital Legacy Planning will also avoid situations where your family can’t access your online accounts. Thus, it’s best to gather some courage and have a talk.

End of Life Planning checklist

Preparing an end-of-life checklist to help your family even after your death. You can include a whole bunch of things you want. Here are some examples of things to include in your End of life checklist.

  • Digital Estate Planning- to manage your Digital Assets.
  • Digital Legacy Planning- plan what happens to your digital footprints after your death.
  • Include all your Digital assets
  • Instructions related to Digital Assets and what you want for them (closing or memorializing online accounts)
  • You can even include your final wishes such as funeral plans and arrangements.

How to protect your Digital Legacy?

Protecting your Digital Legacy can prevent identity theft and data leak. Creating a Digital Legacy Plan is akin to protecting your Digital Legacy after your death. This helps your family as they know exactly how your account should be dealt with.

Different Digital Platforms offer different Legacy tools, for instance, Facebook Legacy policy offers memorializing your account after your death. Similarly, Google Legacy policy lets you choose what happens to your accounts when it’s inactive.

You can take advantage of these Legacy Policies and safeguard your Digital Legacy for your loved ones.

What is a Digital Executor?

A Digital Executor is the person you name to manage your Digital Assets after your demise. Your Digital Executor will have access to your digital documents, photos, videos, social media accounts, subscription accounts, and online bank accounts.

They protect, preserve and manage your Digital Assets after your passing. However, in certain states, Digital Executor doesn’t automatically gain access to your Digital Assets after your demise. This is why it’s important to name a Digital Executor and provide the details of your Digital Accounts.

What is the role of a Digital Executor?

While planning your Digital Legacy you can leave instructions for your Digital Executor regarding the following responsibilities.

  • Archiving files- photos, videos, and documents
  • Closing your online accounts, such as subscription services and social media
  • Deleting files or erasing hard drives
  • Using online accounts for services and paying bills
  • Informing online friends of your death

How to choose a Digital Executor?

Here are a few qualities to keep in mind while choosing your Digital Executor:

  • They should be Highly organized
  • Committed to following your wishes as you’ve spelled them out in your Digital Legacy Plan
  • Has knowledge about Digital Platforms and is comfortable using the Internet
  • Is patient, as the process may take some time and require engaging with many different companies

Who needs Digital Legacy Planning?

Anybody who has documented in cloud storage is active on social media, uses Netflix or Amazon, has online bank accounts, or has some kind of Digital Life is already creating a Digital Legacy. To safeguard their Digital Legacy, they need a plan.

Thus, if we look at millennials, GenZ, and influencers, they have a highly active Digital Life. This means they need to be planning their Digital Legacy.

Senior citizens, baby boomers, and boomers have also created a Digital Legacy in some way or the other. For instance, the older generation might also be on social media but they are active on Digital Platforms that provide cloud storage services or Ebook buying services. This means they too have a Digital Legacy and need a Digital Legacy Plan. Thus, Digital Legacy Planning is for everyone.

Digital Legacy Planning for senior citizens

Senior citizens are mostly unaware of the importance of Digital Legacy Planning. However, planning their Digital Legacy will not only safeguard their Digital Informations but will keep their memories alive even when they die. They can leave behind letters and stories for their future generations as well.

Planning their Digital Legacy will ensure their loved ones can access these valuables after their demise.

Digital Legacy Planning for Millennials

Millennials are often protective of their privacy. This is why they need Digital Legacy Planning. By planning their Digital Legacy they can decide what Digital Information (emails, photos, videos, cloud storage, etc.) they want to share and choose a Digital Executor who can access them. This will ensure their privacy is respected even after their demise.

Digital Legacy planning for influencers

Influencers have a proactive Digital Life which is why they need Digital Legacy Planning. A Digital Legacy Plan will help them plan their Digital Death to secure their online data. Moreover, appointing a Digital Executor will ensure their Digital Legacy is well managed after they die.

What is a Digital Time Capsule?

A Time Capsule can be seen as a collection of memorabilia documenting a place, organization, events, or family. A Digital Time Capsule can be seen as something like a multimedia scrapbook, containing records and mementos They can even include digitized versions of physical keepsakes.

Guide to Clocr’s Time Capsule

Clocr offers a solution for creating a Digital Legacy using their Time Capsule feature. You can create your own personalized Time Capsule with Clocr. It is a kind of digital journal that allows you to document your entire Digital Life and more.

It allows you to create a memory lane for your loved ones. You can even store bedtime stories for your grandkids, or share your final wishes by documenting them and preserving them in your Digital Time Capsule.

How to pass on values using Digital Legacy Planning?

Instilling family values in loved ones and sharing your life experiences, while you are alive is easy⁠. But what about when you pass on?

You can continue to be a part of your loved ones’ lives even after you pass on with careful Digital Legacy Planning.

Create a Digital Will or use Clocr’s Time Capsule for personalized Digital Legacy Planning. Using this, you can choose to leave behind a video, letters, emails, photographs, and even your entire digital footprint to set an example for your family with the life that you’ve led.

Difference between Inheritance and Digital Legacy

Inheritance

  • Tangible Assets you give to your family
  • Eventually fades as it is spent
  • Temporary, may not pay off

Digital Legacy

  • Intangible Assets you give to your loved ones
  • Permanent, Lives beyond your death.
  • Makes an impact and not just an impression