Data legacy brings risks but few rewards for government

Data legacy brings risks but few rewards for government

does not provide a catch-all solution: digital material still needs to be saved, filed or deleted as part of daily business, otherwise government will continue to accumulate digital material in an unstructured way.

“For that reason, human information management activity will still be required for the time being.”

The transition from paper based working to email and electronic documents has “undermined the rigour of information management across much of government.” While little information has been lost altogether, much of what has accumulated over the past 15-20 years is “poorly organised, scattered across different systems and almost impossible to search effectively”.

“This not only undermines government’s ability to structure and preserve long term records, it also creates real and immediate risks for accounting officers, who may be unable to provide evidence for past decisions and actions or to meet their statutory obligations for public records and freedom of information.”

A properly managed archive of searchable digital legacy information would have many potential uses. One would be giving individuals embarking on new policy projects the ability to search for similar work before.

“Wasted effort recreating old work might cost government nearly £500 million per year,” the report says.

Image from GOV.UK, Open Government Licence v3.0

Digital Files After Death, What Happens to Your Digital Legacy?

CryptoTestament Launches Encrypted Technology Designed to Protect Digital Legacies

CryptoTestament Launches Encrypted Technology Designed to Protect Digital Legacies

Click here to view original web page at CryptoTestament Launches Encrypted Technology Designed to Protect Digital Legacies

CryptoTestament’s new Kickstarter campaign provides tools to safeguard important financial and digital information

This press release was orginally distributed by SBWire

Montreal, QC — (SBWIRE) — 01/19/2017 — CryptoTestament, developers of new encrypted technology tools to secure postmortem digital legacies — including credentials and passwords, Bitcoin accounts and digital files —today launched its Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign to bring the digital technology to consumers.

CryptoTestament bridges the gap between estate laws, which grant families access to digital data, and privacy laws, which often prohibit access after a family member has passed away. As simple as using a thumb drive or saving a file to the cloud, CryptoTestament uses AES 256-bit encryption with a manageable console allowing CryptoTestament to unlock the device after death. The device is secured using the same certification used by the NSA and other govern-ment agencies. With the proper credentials and proof of death, the company works with the ex-ecutor of the will to pass the secure digital legacy on to the family member or confidante chosen by the client.

“In today’s digital landscape, more and more sensitive information, both personal and financial, is being stored digitally and is not recoverable after death unless family members have access to passwords and accounts. CryptoTestament aims to address this growing issue and preserve one’s ‘digital legacy’ for their heirs,” said Tom Falardeau-Leclerc, CryptoTestament’s CEO and founder. “Bitcoin accounts, for example, are not recoverable after death without specific creden-tials and families can suffer significant financial losses if they do not properly plan. Estate plan-ning must now account for digital activity, and CryptoTestament easily meets that need for con-sumers.”

Various storage sizes of USB-style encrypted devices are utilized to meet individual storage needs. Free for the first year of service, the devices are (all U.S. dollars) $70 for 8GB, $90 for 16GB and $110 for 32GB.

“CryptoTestament works like a safety deposit box at your bank,” Falardeau-Leclerc said. “It is an extra layer of protection necessary to preserve and secure all sensitive digital files, including cryptocurrency accounts, passwords, music, video, photos and more in this digital age.”

To learn more or get involved in CryptoTestament’s Kickstarter campaign, please visit

About CryptoTestament
Based in Montreal, Quebec, CryptoTestament’s mission is to secure the digital legacies of people after they pass away. The encrypted hardware and cloud technology ensures all digital files, passwords, Bitcoin accounts and more are safely protected and can be easily accessed by family members. Founded in 2012, CryptoTestament is currently raising funds on Kickstarter to bring this technology to the masses.

For more information or to figure out how to get involved, please visit

For more information on this press release visit:

Media Relations Contact

Howard Sherman
Telephone: 888-983-1682
Email: Click to Email Howard Sherman

Estate Planning Enters the Digital Age

Estate Planning Enters the Digital Age

Legal Service and Sales O'rganization's LSSO's Annual RainDance Conference Chicago June 7 and 8
Legal Service and Sales O'rganization's LSSO's Annual RainDance Conference Chicago June 7 and 8

One reality of modern life is our increasing reliance on digital information and services. It’s difficult to take and then order prints of photographs, accumulate travel rewards, book travel, sort through financial records, communicate with distant friends, and even keep abreast of breaking news without a computer and e-mail access. Most creditors and banks encourage customers to “go green” and receive bills and statements electronically. Medical records and histories are increasingly available to patients and caregivers via online systems. Many people use online rental sites to rent their under- or unused vacation property to offset carrying costs. Unfinished novels and other valuable content produced by authors and artists will likely be stored on a remote service in the cloud, instead of locally on a hard drive.

There are many crypto and digital currencies, such as Bitcoin. Domain names continue to garner seven- and eight-figure sales prices: the $35.6 million paid for “” in 2010 is an extreme example. Virtual gaming is enormously popular: one gamer named Jon Jacobs built, ran and ultimately sold $635,000 in digital assets (including a casino called “Club Neverdie” built on an asteroid) that only existed virtually in Entropia Universe, an online gaming platform.

Despite the increasing prevalence of digital assets in our lives, few online account custodians offer customers online tools allowing them to provide for access to or disposition of any property held in these accounts, or even the records associated with the accounts. Unfortunately, the law has not kept pace with modern life and technologies. Digital assets are treated the same as non-digital ones by the majority of state probate statutes. This has proven unworkable, as the custodians of many online accounts have refused to recognize fiduciaries’ authority over digital assets.

In fairness, electronic communications and accounts are unlike traditional letters and accounts in several ways. As compared to paper letters, lost and even deleted e-mails might be easily located and retrieved from an e mail service provider. A decedent or incapable person might have opened an online account (to access embarrassing content, or a dating service such as Ashley Madison, for example) with the expectation that it would remain private and undiscoverable by anyone, including a fiduciary. Without evidence of the account holder’s intent, it is impossible to know for certain whether the user intended the account to be accessible and not private.

If you become incapable or die, your fiduciaries will become responsible for handling your finances. They will inventory your assets, and they may need to manage or close your financial accounts or business, pay your debts, taxes, and expenses, and distribute your assets to your beneficiaries. In today’s digital world, your fiduciaries need access to your digital assets to do their jobs and to monitor and close your online accounts, protecting them from cyber thieves. (In 2014, alone, $16 billion was stolen from 12.7 million identity fraud victims in the United States!)

In the past, fiduciaries responsible for managing assets of and for others could easily marshal, collect and manage the assets. Often, the biggest nuisance was convincing a recalcitrant financial institution to honor a power of attorney, and personal representatives and conservators, armed with court decrees, encountered few problems. That has changed, because digital assets can be encrypted, secured by passwords that die with you, or protected by federal and state data privacy and anti-hacking laws.

Even if the fiduciary can find a password, the account provider’s terms-of-service agreement (TOSA) might forbid account access by anyone except the account holder—implicitly barring a fiduciary from access. Online TOSAs are frequently silent as to postmortem options, and often simply prohibit postmortem transfer. See the compendium of a myriad of TOSA provisions, maintained at

To ensure your beneficiaries and fiduciaries can access your digital assets, either to preserve and distribute them, or to destroy them for you, your Power of Attorney and estate planning documents must indicate what you wish to happen to your digital assets. To that end, your estate planning attorney will ask you about your digital and online accounts and will include appropriate provisions in your will, trust and power of attorney documents. Without your express consent in your documents, your family and fiduciaries may be unable to access your accounts, even if you have used a password manager or shared your access information with them. If you use encryption to secure your data, wherever it is stored, you must assume that your fiduciary will be unable to break it, and plan accordingly.