Hit by a Bus: How to Protect Your Digital Assets
Nobody likes to think about getting hurt, sick or dying, which is why it’s hard to discuss things like disability and life insurance. And while we can all hope that we will never become incapacitated, it’s important to plan for the proverbial “getting hit by a bus.”
This is especially true for owners of digital assets such as domain names and websites. Domain names eventually expire, and getting them back after expiration is very difficult and costly. The continuity of websites is also important.
Here are four things you can do to make sure your domains and other digital assets are taken care of when you are not able to do it yourself.
Auto-renew ensures that your domain names renew each year without having to manually renew them. Namecheap will automatically renew your domains before they expire.
Be sure the payment information in your account is up-to-date. Some people set their domains to auto-renew but forget to update their credit card information when they get a new card. This causes automatic renewal to fail.
Renew in Advance
Renew your domains for many years in advance. You can renew most domains for up to ten years at a time. If you become sick or temporarily unable to manage your domains, this gives you and your loved ones plenty of time to recuperate and renew the domains.
While renewing in advance costs a bit of money now, it’s actually more cost-effective than renewing each year. Registries that provide domain names to Namecheap are expected to increase their fees in the coming years, but you can renew now at today’s prices.
Find a Trusted Partner
Ideally, you can find someone you trust to manage your domains in your absence. Perhaps it is your spouse, a sibling, parents or children. Provide them with your login information and instructions (such as renewing domain names) in the event of an emergency. Make sure to keep this information up-to-date.
Have an Estate Plan
In the event of permanent disability or death, a loved one might need to step in to protect your digital assets. Loved ones will be dealing with a significant emotional loss, so it’s wise to make managing your estate as easy as possible.
This is especially important if you own valuable domain names and websites that need to be protected as part of the estate. In addition to keeping good records, sit down with your heirs to discuss the value of your domain names and websites. Find a trusted person who can help wind down or liquidate the virtual assets in an orderly way.
Let technology put you one step ahead
It’s not all about planning and preparation — there are things you can do right now to stop bad things from happening. We recently introduced Domain Vault, a new product that combines several key security features for domains, including registry lock. It means only authorized persons can ever make changes to crucial settings for your domain, and when changes do need to be made, the person requesting them will have to go through levels of machine and human verification before they can. Find out more about how Domain Vault can change your domain security.
Just a Bit of Preparation
Thinking about something bad happening in the future is never fun. But it’s the reality, and it’s why people buy insurance and create a will.
Don’t overlook your digital assets. Make a plan and communicate it with your family or trusted advisors. They will thank you for it.