Many times over the years I have thought about my digital footprint. What I mean by this are all the profiles that I have setup online. My online banking, Gmail, Expedia, Facebook and the list goes on and on.
I know there are sites that can help you remove your accounts like Account Killer. But it only takes care of the most popular services and assumes that you are alive – more on this in a moment.
How many times have you created an account on a service and then forget that you have done so? Of course, we all go back and delete the accounts as we should.
There are many reasons why we should delete “dormant” accounts. One compelling and reason is there is still a username and password associated with it. Every week we hear in the news that some popular service has had their user accounts stolen or compromised. But I know that you practice safe password management.
A lot of times my thoughts turn to my digital footprint when I am thinking about when I am no longer walking this earth. Especially if it comes unexpectedly. My spouse will now be tasked with getting these accounts shut down.
My wife does not know all the accounts I have setup and vice versa. About five years ago I started using a password manager called LastPass. Lastpass has a nice feature called “emergency access” where you can designate someone or someones to have access to your vault.
This is not a perfect service, but I have found that it covers off most of what I need. Though I have not looked closely, perhaps someone has already built a service for just such a need. I know there are services that are now available that allow you to tweet from beyond the grave.
I know I will continue to think this through as time goes by and as I get older. So consider learning more about your digital footprint and how to manage it.