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Digital Legacy
Episode 477th August 2022 • Tech Talk with Amit & Rinat • Amit Sarkar & Rinat Malik
00:00:00 00:48:36

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When we create our Will, we only think about our physical and financial assets. But what about our digital assets? Have you ever thought about what would happen to all your social media accounts, subscriptions, online investments, documents, photos, scanned files, etc.? Thinking about your digital legacy is more vital than ever and companies have already started thinking about it.

In this week's talk, Amit and Rinat talk about Digital Legacy, why we need to think about it, how we can plan for it and a lot more!

Transcripts

Rinat Malik:

Hi everyone, welcome to Tech Talk, a podcast where Amit and I talk about various topics related to technology. Today, we're gonna start by asking you guys a question. Do you have a will? Do you have an arrangement of what will happen to everything after you pass away? It's certainly a thought-provoking question. And we want to look at this area of we want to look at the digital side of this area. We have we all have seniors, you guys are listening to our podcast. We all have digital presence on the Internet and in various other places offline as well, which might be digital. And all of these presents creates content and assets on the internet and in in digital realm. And we want to talk about the digital legacy that you will leave behind when you finally pass away. So this is a quite a thought-provoking topic to talk about. When Amit came up with the topic, I was actually quite interested because there is a lot to talk about, and it's quite thought provoking in a way that a lot of the things that we may not even so far, we may have not even thought about. We can exclude those in this talk. So yeah, digital legacy. It's in one way, one in a nutshell. Digital legacy is all the legacy you leave behind digitally. As the name suggests and As soon as you start thinking about it, you probably start thinking with your Facebook account, but it's not just limited to that it's not just the content you create, although that is a major part of it. There will be a lot of other types of things that you know, you may or may not have, like for example, your Bitcoin or NFT. So, it's a very interesting topic. Hope you guys will stay with us while we explored this area. Amit what's your thoughts on this legacy?

Amit Sarkar:

So yeah, thanks for Rinat for the introduction. I think Yeah, it's a very apt topic because we have so many logins these days we have social media accounts, shopping accounts. Bank accounts, and we manage everything online. And it's crucial to think about what happens to these accounts when we die, when we become paralysed when we become incapacitated, or handicapped or whatever. So what happens to these accounts, how are these accounts managed? What happens to the information that's there in the account? Do they get lost forever? What does Facebook Google Amazon Apple, what do they do with these accounts? Do they have any policies, etc. And that's what digital legacies are all about. When we talk about legacies in olden times, it used to be about how much how much wealth you're leaving behind in terms of financial assets, how much property you're leaving behind, how much money you're leaving behind for your children, how many houses properties etc. So those are the kinds of things that used to normally put in your field. And that used to be the legacy that you leave behind for your family for your children. You used to have insurance so you in as part of your Will you would write your insurance details of what happens to the money who How does it get paid, etc, etc. But no one talks about okay, who will manage my Instagram profile? Or who will manage my Facebook profile? Or what happens to all the emails in my Gmail account, or Yahoo account or Hotmail account? So no one talks about that, and then what happens to the money in my bank account? So what happens to that? I mean, I manage it online. So what happens to all those things? And that is something that companies have already started thinking about, and that's what we want to explore in this talk.

Rinat Malik:

Yeah, absolutely. I mean, this I actually thought about what will happen to my online content and accounts quite a few years ago, and I did some research, I think, five, six years ago, and at that time, I read an article where the journalist actually probed, if you like, all the different major platforms like Microsoft, Facebook, Gmail, and they found Microsoft to be the most to have the most sort of structured or sort of, sort of response team who actually thought about it and they had a process in place, although the others didn't even think about at that time. Obviously nowadays, it's a lot different because your Facebook account has become an asset in itself, because it's not just the relationships you manage over there. It's your content and it might have a business side of it. You might manage a page or two, which might have subscribers which are generating money. So there are assets involved in all different major platforms like Instagram, Facebook, as well as your Gmail and Microsoft free email account which you might be thinking we are not much but you know, there is there is a lot of Sister Sister products of Microsoft that maybe you haven't thought about, for example, X-box maybe you're a gamer and have coins, or some sort of assets in those games in X Box. In your X-box account. You might have your bank details and the rest with subscriptions. And then you could also have a VR account with Facebook. I mean, there are so many things that each of these companies own. For example, Facebook owns WhatsApp and Instagram, which both could have business accounts. And then they also own the Oculus Rift, the virtual reality profile Microsoft has similar sort of range of products that you might be separately connected to but not thought about that they are all under one account. So it's good in a way that you know, your loved ones might not have to go through all the different accounts, but still important to know that what's happening. And nowadays, you can sort of nominate or tell these companies about what should happen to your account after you pass away. So there are now a structured sort of business processes in place by these businesses. But then again, you know, now they're in place with all of these major platforms, but then, you know, you might have smaller accounts with smaller companies which doesn't have these things. Sorted. So it's a very interesting thing to explore. What would you want? I mean, before we, I think, before this digital age, I think the norm was that make everything cash, and then divided up in, you know, according to what you say in your will, but nowadays, not all of them can be made to cash. Because in an Instagram account with a lot of followership, you might actually not want them to be sold away, but to be managed by your, your inheritance so they can continue to leverage the followership from that account. So yeah, it's quite powerful thoughts to sort of explore.

Amit Sarkar:

Definitely, and you touched upon very finer aspects. You touched about NFT's you touched about monetization from Facebook accounts and Instagram accounts. And that's actually such an important thing because the lot of people like us, I mean, we started doing this podcast almost two years back. And, I mean, we've still not generating any revenue from it. But there are a lot of people who generate revenue from the content that they create. And that revenue is actually running their families when they're alive. But what happens to that revenue once they get incapacitated or die or whatever. So I think it's very important to define all those things, and then put it in a trust or a will or etc. But when I say put it in a will what do we actually mean? So say, I have a Facebook account, put in will What am I putting the username, am I putting the password and then okay, so suppose I put the username and password. So do I want my son to manage my personal Facebook account on my behalf? Is that right? So then, if that's not right, then what should be the next step? Okay, so what should happen with my Facebook account, should it get deactivated? Because normally what happens is if you don't use an account for some time, say a year, then it starts it gets deactivated. And then you have to go through a process of getting the account reactivated. And I think after two years it gets deleted because there's no point for the company to store your data if you're not accessing it for the two years. So you deactivate your record you delete your account, or do you just memorialise it. So there is this whole term of memorialization where you actually create a memorial so you keep the account active but it's now a memorial in memory of Amit Sarkar. My Instagram page will be there, people can access it, but it will show a sign saying that yes, I'm no longer alive, or I'm no longer able to control this account, etc. And that's very important. And these are the kinds of questions that the companies are now thinking and they have already provided such features on their platforms.

Rinat Malik:

Yeah, I remember back when Facebook was there was a lot of controversy on Facebook not ever deleting, you know, you know being a variable to delete a Facebook profile. And then there was I think I read a meme somewhere that in 50 or 100 years time, there'll be more Facebook profiles of dead people than then a live one. So it's an interesting thought. And yeah, what you mentioned is in you know, as a memorial and different ways you can preserve or not preserve and it's a controversial and moral question like what would you rather like and is it okay for your loved ones who are the closest to you but yet still, you might have you know, content information messages in your Facebook or other personal messaging services that you don't want them to see. But you also want the other aspects of say for example, you don't want them to see your Facebook messages, but you do want them to manage your Facebook pages which are you know, have a large followship. So, what happens in these scenarios can you actually pick and choose which ones to be deleted and which ones to be transferred can be transferred? Can a page ownership be transferred, transferred to a different account and should it be that kind of, that's an interesting thing to explore.

Amit Sarkar:

I think page ownership can be transferred, but I think profile ownership may not be and if you so there is a process now in place, because the thing is when we're talking about digital assets all these digital assets are protected by passwords, or some kind of authentication mechanism. So now, the question is when you define your will, do you give the passwords to all your loved ones?

Rinat Malik:

That's quite interesting. I actually thought quite a few years ago, I didn't think I started thinking about it a long time ago and I thought that okay, I want to have my I do want something to be happening with my accounts. You know, I have my OneNote with a lot of notes and you know, some of them has direction of what could happen, so I want at least one of them to have my Microsoft password. That way they can at least I could detail everything I want to happen in OneNote but they could access the OneNote with my password so as long as I can get them the password, but nowadays with two factor authorization and other security measures in place, just having the password is not enough and also for good reason as well. You know, for security purposes. You know, just the password shouldn't really I mean, when the account is owned by you, which the service provider for example, Google or Microsoft should know who is accessing it, because it has your bank cards and other payment details as well. So from a security perspective, in case you're not dead, no one should be able to just you know can do everything that you will do. So say for example, even if you give your loved one your password, and they gets in and then they transfers all the money from your bank account to their bank account, but then you know, after some time you realise that you had debts but you know, the debts don't transfer as you die, it goes through with you. So what if a malicious person, you know, added dead to your, your account, and it couldn't be could become quite complicated. So, so in that sense, even your loved one shouldn't be allowed to transfer money from your account to another account, but if they have your password, they might and what do you do in this scenario?

Amit Sarkar:

So that's what a will or a trust is because it's supposed to enforce your wishes. So, when you are so, so you write a will and you define all the assets that you have digital as well as physical assets and financial assets, whatever So you define all the lists of all the assets. Then you define okay, what asset should be distributed and how it should be distributed? Okay. So if you're saying that okay, I have a I have a house. I want the house to go to my son, and I have, say 300 pound 300,000 pound cash, I want that cash, go to my wife. And then I have my Facebook account. I want my Facebook account to be kept active, but it should be memorialised. So these are the kinds of things that I would define in a will. And when whoever executes the will, will then make sure that it's executed based on my wishes. So I think the owners of how the information should be used always lies on you. And that's what the legacy is all about. Right? So suppose I don't create a legacy. Okay. And I don't share any passwords in that case, what should my say wife or son do? So in that case, what they will do is they will try to approach Facebook, they'll try to approach Amazon, Google Microsoft and what they'll do is they'll request them to maybe deactivate maybe delete or because I have not defined anything or they can decide okay, memorialise it, but for them to take such action, they would need to provide some kind of necessary information like proof of identity, proof of death, proof of incapacity, incapacitation, etc. So that way, Facebook and Google Microsoft, all these big players, they can identify that yes, that person has now been left incapacitated and they are they have died and they have proved that they are the closed ones, they are the closest members to this person. And based on their request, we are dealing with this because there is no will. So there is no legal basis for them to carry out any of these transactions. So that's how they can do and take ownership of the account. And that's why it's important to define a will right now, because we don't know what will happen. And if you're not sure about these things, banks can take ownership of all your financial assets. If you're not announcing the nominees if you're not announcing what happens to say you're shopping cart, to your cryptocurrencies, to your OneDrive and Google Drive photographs. So normally a lot of people have Dropbox. They have lots of photographs, what happens to those photos, who does it go to?

Rinat Malik:

And those are valuable memories to loved ones but maybe nothing to do to the to Microsoft so they would they would be happy to delete them and save their space while those are really valuable folders to your loved ones. So it's important, absolutely important to define what you would like for everything to happen and this actually hits close to home for me quite a bit Amit When you came up. With the topic I immediately thought about my younger brother he passed away very recently to over a year ago, and there was nothing defined because he's younger than me and so I mean, it's quite sad for me to even communicate with all of these companies. So I haven't here isn't my to do list but I haven't even started yet because to get the documentation that proves my relationship with my brother and the fact that he did in fact pass away. All of this documentation is quite lengthy and once I have that data, I can communicate with them and you know, do anything that I would like to so right now his profiles are there just as it is not logged in and not managed or not memorialised and is quite important. That's even more strongly to our audience that it is important to at least define what will happen to your digital accounts, assets and everything including content. So your loved one can take care of those after you pass away and it is important to your loved ones as well to be able to do that. And that is from my own personal experience.

Amit Sarkar:

Yeah, Rinat it was very unfortunate. I mean, it was very unfortunate when you lost your brother. But I think you're right. I mean, we never know what will happen in life. I mean, we have Parents right? parents also now have digital assets. And we don't know have they defined anything for us or, or for our, I mean for each other. So it's, I think the main reason for doing this talk is basically to create that awareness that these things are something that people are now thinking about. So like Instagram profile, you're so popular and suddenly you die. What happens to all your photos? What happens? To all the advertisements that you are showing through your platform and all the all the all the brands that you connect? What happens to all of that, and people have now started thinking about it. So there is something called is I mean, every company has a different name to it. So like Google has inactive account manager Facebook has something and Apple has something but they have now clearly cleared defined policies. And as part of this podcast what we'll do is we'll share those links, so you can have access to those. And you can actually go and check. Okay, so what do I do with my Instagram? What do I do with my Facebook account? What do I do with my Google account? And imagine if you're using Google account, you're using Maps you're using Gmail, you're using YouTube you're using? I mean, Google Drive, you're using so many other things, just from Google. And if you're on the Apple ecosystem, you have the Apple TV, apple plus, what happens to all your subscriptions by the way. So have you thought about that?

Rinat Malik:

So yeah, it's keeping our subscription and streaming services. This actually reminds me quite appropriate situation that happened very recently. For those of you who are gamers a very popular gaming streamer I think his name was Techno Blade.

Amit Sarkar:

Yes, He passed away very recently.

Rinat Malik:

He Passed away in cancer, and he actually did have a lot of things set up. He had passed away a message for his dad to convey after he passed away and you know that that's a good example of, you know, thinking ahead, even pass your time of passing and how to take care of all of these. I mean, definitely do us the audience to check out the story. I think if you search Techno Blade, even if you're not a gamer, you would know that he was a streamer. He was a very popular streamer, and a lot of people were his fan. And I'm not a gamer at all, but even I somehow you know what to, you know, got this news that this happened? And who he was, etcetera. So that's, that's definitely something to think about. Something to take action to. I mean, here we, you know, Amit and I we do talk about topics every week. And at the end, we always urge you to do something we do. I mean, you know, we're not trying to convince you to do this way or that way. But we do urge you to be aware and do something about that topic. And in this topic. I think it's important that we guys, we asked you that you guys do something about to what will happen to your legacy when you pass away and use potentially use Techno Blade as an example and one other thing as well. This this is from this is from my personal experience from my brother. Which I learned is that if you have iPhone, which he did, iPhone pin numbers are not sort of you can't avail it from anywhere. If you know it, and if you pass away, that's it. So it's not saved in the cloud. It's not anywhere and you can't sort of recover the phone in some way even if you take it to a tech class nor even Apple. Even they would not be able to unlock your phone. If you don't know your iPhone passcode so that's very important if you want your phone to be available after you pass away. You know, there might be important data, information, photos, memories in your phone or the phone might be an expensive one, which you might want people to have is an iPhone, you do whatever it shows that your Apple PIN code is Phone PIN code is somehow available after you pass away so yeah, Techno Blade is what I wanted to sort of bring up a really good example of what should happen to your digital legacy. If you are, you know, an influence or influence of any sort. That that's a good example to look at.

Amit Sarkar:

I think it's even I mean, you compared Apple, but Android also has the same feature. So when you actually create the PIN, the PIN is always stored locally. It's never transmitted to the Google servers. So it's on device encryption, that happens with the brain. So even Google can't unlock your phone. So it applies the same to Android ecosystem as well. But I'm not sure maybe we'll have to do some more research and we'll provide the links in the description about how Google manages smartphones because, I mean, we talked about digital assets like your subscriptions, your social media profiles, your shopping accounts, your bank accounts, etc. But the most important asset which is not digital, but it interacts a lot digitally is your smartphone, what happens to your smartphone? How do you unlock it? And I mean, we are talking about creating all the list, but in the end, they are all secured by a password. So do we want through the will share passwords as well? So you might want to share passwords for some accounts, but how do you share passwords? I mean, do you write it somewhere Do you have a file you protect it? And then that that file, has a password etc?

Rinat Malik:

Just immediately rings alarm bells, that it's a security risk. Because if all the passwords are protected with one password that in itself is and if you write it down, it's just absolutely not advisable to write down ever your passwords. So what actually do you do Amit? I do wonder.!!

Amit Sarkar:

So I mean, you have heard of password managers, right? And you might be using a password manager, I use the offline password manager called KeePass. I recently created a video for it. I will share the link. And basically I manage all my passwords in a single database and I store it on my local machine and because it's protected by one single password, and that password is a very long password. You cannot easily hack it. It's a long password. It's not a password, it's a pass-phrase so it's very important that you understand the difference between a word in a phrase and how easily it is to hack something. Yeah go ahead

Rinat Malik:

so just to sort of challenge you on this. I mean, I don't think they're either the hacking the actual being a tech wizard, hacking your password with brute force or any other very clever method is the reason passwords get failed. Password fail, it's because as human it always 99% of the time. It happens because of human error. And now no matter how difficult long or complicated the password is, it's because of human error. That most of the time someone you know, gets the account. So what, what would you do in that scenario? Because yeah, as you said, I also use a password manager might see even less, less secure because mine's just Chrome so what would happen if someone gets my Gmail pass? I made it I couldn't unrelated to me very complicated, all of those things, but I could make an error one day.

Amit Sarkar:

Oh yeah. So to deal with that first firstly, you have to understand why a password manager exists. So yes, people reuse their passwords people use the same passwords people use a combination of certain password and maybe they have three or four different combinations of the same password they use across multiple websites. And they have like tonnes of logins you have logins for insurance you have login for bank you have logins for social media logins for shopping, login for cinemas login for theatres login for so many things. Okay, and all these logins should have a password based on a certain criteria. Some have special characters, some have don't have special characters, some have uppercase, lowercase, etc. And it's hard to remember everything. A password manager comes because it can create a password for you on the fly that you don't have to remember. That's the first thing. Now, you're right. A password manager is protected by a single password. That's the case for both offline as well as online. So the only way to secure that is through a passphrase a very long password, not a password passphrase so it's almost like the length of a sentence, maybe 100 characters, but it's easy to remember so the password could be I love Amit Sarkar, a lot and then some numbers. So I love Amit Sarkar a lot is a sentence in itself. But because it's so long, the processing power that we currently have, will not be able to hack it in the in the near future. So now, what happens is that these password managers are there and you make a human error. And because of that your password gets leaked. It has leaked. So we interviewed Troy hunt in one of our podcasts he maintains a website called have I been pwned and if you type your email there, it'll tell you in which database all the passwords have leaked. So now that password that has leaked is online, and what has happened and it has happened to me LinkedIn passwords got leaked, and those LinkedIn passwords with that password and unfortunately I was reusing those passwords in some other accounts. And the hackers, they were smart enough to try that same password with my email on those accounts. Now, here's the trick. Have you heard of two factor authentication? So that's tied to your phone. And that's how you make sure that just having a password does not compromise your account. Maybe we'll do another talk about two factor authentication because that's a very important topic as well. But the whole idea is that you don't have just a password to access your account. You have some kind of an SMS code, some kind of on mobile that's generated or you have a physical key that you have to press or connect in your device that gives you access to your account. And that is the crucial bit that you have to be always careful about. Because if you have to factor authentication even if you make an error, people cannot get into your account that easily they will need the smartphone, they will need that physical key. Otherwise they will not have access to your account even if you make an error even if the password gets leaked even if it is online, hosted on a cloud server. You're still safe. So I think I mean………

Rinat Malik:

yeah, I mean this is kind of going a little bit off topic but we are going to bring it back exactly like this because that's the that's essentially the challenge when with your digital legacy is because two factor authorization you need the access to your phone. And you want to ensure that not only do you share your password, but also give access to your phone to your loved ones Otherwise, they wouldn't be able to access we encourage using two factor authorization and in all aspects absolutely very much do because it is more secure and it is the most secure way of protecting your information and content online but at the same time you also want to if you want to give whichever access to your loved ones after you pass away. You have to remember that not just giving them the password, you know just giving them a password which won't be enough for them to have access to everything that you have. And a lot of the times you only have an account through a mobile app and you don't potentially use it on websites. You know, login on website. Many accounts are only based on only mobile base for example, Tik Tok is yeah, you can go on TikTok with web browser but most of its activities are on mobile phone. And if you have a large followship and you know there might be money coming in or whatever, then you might want that to take into consideration when you're are making a list of all the things that your loved ones should have access to.

Amit Sarkar:

Yes, and now it's not just TikTok I mean a lot of the times what happens these days is we have a facial recognition and we have biometrics enabled. So what happens is we forget the password. So even if you write down the password, it's protected by some kind of biometrics and we recently did a talk on biometrics as well. I think. So you have to think about all these things. When you're defining your digital legacy. How would people access the information that you have so carefully protected? And what kind of information are you willing to share with them When you pass away?

Rinat Malik:

and who will be the executor, for example, in like platforms like Facebook or Google or Microsoft, they have so many different areas where you might have you know x you know contents and information in. For example, the example we had talked about earlier, you know, you might want your Facebook pages to transfer ownership or other content. You want your loved ones to have access to but you don't want your Facebook messages to be to be repealed, for whatever reason. Then someone has to go into your Facebook account and delete all of the messages before it's given the access given to your loved ones. So who would be like secured against in a traditional sense there is usually an executor for your assets. You know, when you die, you have different investments, properties etc. So there is an administrator or executor who does all of these things and then transfers it over as Verrier intention as intended to your loved ones. But then there might be a need for executor in the digital world. Who or what we'll do that because each individual platforms, they don't want to take responsibility for the other platforms. So Microsoft is not going to do anything to do with Gmail or Google services. So there needs to be an independent executor, who will take care of all these platforms on your behalf. So how does that work? And is there a service available? Right now that you prepared that will be will be the executor of your digital content in future.

Amit Sarkar:

So normally what happens is people have family lawyers and the execute the will and the lawyer is mostly from a firm so if the lawyer passes away or he moves on to certain moves away, then they can bring in some other lawyer and that's an impartial person or third person that he or she is not related to anyone from your family. And that person is an impartial executor of your will. It could be the will trust or whatever. But the whole idea is that when you define your will you define it in front of a solicitor so the wording is exactly correct. Because sometimes what happens is the wordings can be reinterpreted or interpreted in a completely different manner. So you have to make sure that if you make it very simple, so it's it cannot be read in multiple ways or understood in multiple ways. Or you write it from a legal point of view or you ask a legal person to write your will. And then you verify it and you sign it. And on the day when you die or based on whether you become paralysed or incapacitated. Then the lawyer again can come to your family, you can have a meeting and you can then that person will execute the will first the will be read out to everyone and then it will be executed. So that's the normal way of execution and you can find lawyers who write wills and the lawyers who can maintain the will for you and then execute and we will share some links as well for that. But yeah, normally this is how it's done. You are not going to leave the Will with some with some of your family members, you might leave the will to a friend because you're not going to transfer ownership of your mind. If a friend is very close, and if you don't have any other relations close to you, then you might transfer some assets to your friend because he has taken very good care of you and you're very close to him or her. But normally it goes to the family. And if it goes to the family then you can have your friend as an impartial executor as well. So yeah, these are the main ways you can do it. But I would always urge to go properly and do the legal way. So who's if you have a family lawyer, talk to that person. Make sure because they are bound by confidentiality as well. So they cannot share the content of the will with anyone in the family.

Rinat Malik:

I don't know if this makes sense. But while talking about register, the reason cryptocurrency or the blockchain became so popular is because something that was quite private before it was questioned was the need for the you know the master ledger to be private. Why can't it be public and validated by everyone? So, of course, in your wills, as you leave your legacy, your password should absolutely be private because then what's the point but the distribution of what should happen? Is there a need for that to be private? What if it was always public written somewhere what you want right now? And, you know, it's just a execution part to the access part when you pass away? The handover the handing over of the password that happens when you pass away but everything that you wanted you already written it in a blog post, for example, and it's always publicly available say for example, I want you know, my children to have this many percentage and my wife and you know, all of these things I've already told, say for example, not that I have but you know, if someone already have it, they know they have it publicly written so it's can be can be validated, but it's an old can basically change the story after either so that that wow, what do you think of that idea? It's just it's just something just came up. Hopefully our audience will make the internet reality there is the if they don't find any. If it's not a stupid idea,

Amit Sarkar:

let's be paranoid for a bit okay. So I have a will I write the will I write the will and I put it in an envelope and then I seal it with a Vax, and then it's put a seal on the VAX with a date and I destroy the seal. Okay, so no one can forge it. Okay, so that's in the physical world. In order for me to do the same thing digitally, I need to ensure that the digital will is not forced in any other way by any other person so how do you enforce that? That’s how blockchain comes. Blockchain is not about decentralisation or keeping everything public. Blockchain is to make sure if something is digital, how do you ensure that if it is copied, what is the original version? So it keeps a track of multiple copies,

Rinat Malik:

you know what the original one is. So Identifying the original one.

Amit Sarkar:

Exactly, that’s the NFT as well right. So the blockchain enables you to keep track of the changes that have been made to the original document. And

Rinat Malik:

So can I make my will an NFT and achieved in Ethereum network?

Amit Sarkar:

It's a good concept maybe we should discuss this idea.

Rinat Malik:

Yeah, absolutely. This is, you know what we can do, Amit? I mean, you know, you know, we have many topics to talk about in future as well, but I have a list of various ideas, tech related ideas that I just written down as ideas but I don't think I'll ever come around to making them a reality. So, you know, in some of those episodes, I can actually go through some of the ideas I have but okay, that's for another. Another conversation, but yeah, absolutely. I mean, I don't actually mind if, if anyone from our audience takes this as an idea, creates a company. I don't even need to claim it just make it a reality. And it would be it would be good for humanity. I will take it as that.

Amit Sarkar:

I think it's an interesting premise, because you're right. We all have physical wills, wills and everything is moving online. So how do we convert will to an online version? So what if we have an online will, how do we ensure that it is not tampered with it is not changed? It is not modified. And the one way to do it is having a blockchain you can have a Ethereum blockchain. Using a smart contract, you can have a Bitcoin blockchain. You can have any kind of blockchain and put it there so you ensure that okay, it survives. Now, the problem is, again, these decentralised networks, sometimes they die. They become a flop. What happens to them?

Rinat Malik:

There is definitely that risk, but then obviously, this is a billion dollar industry. NFT I think, some other thing and risk trillion yet, but yeah, NFT you know, the whole industry is trillion dollars, billion dollars and 1000s and 10s of 1000s of people working. So it's, I mean, obviously there's always a chance it can die. But you know, if you choose one of the one of the most, you know, more popular ones, more established ones like Ethereum network or polygon has now become quite established as well. Yeah. Then if there is less chance for it to die, and also, I mean, if you were really paranoid of it, you know, you can be a miner and download the whole of, you know, the whole of the blockchain in your computer and there is way to, to get information out of that as well. So it's not it's not like that information has to completely die away outside of your control will still preserve the information. But if the network dies, your validation by the rest of the world dies with it, but that's, you know, that's only a very unlikely scenario. I mean, the banks could also collapse tomorrow or government in the country could collapse tomorrow. I mean, it's I think it's that level of unlikely scenario for Ethereum network to die as well. But one of the things I just thought about a few minutes ago, I'm trying to think about is Yeah, so this is, you know, this is from my personal scenario as my brother passed away. He I mean, is for me, it's too sad to go to Facebook now and fight with them to prove what he wanted, because I don't have a solid proof of what his intentions were. I know he talked about various things, and I know that but how do I prove it and gives me access to but if he had publicly, you know, declared things that he would want this there won't be any proof needed because it's publicly declared he as the owner, he edged it in Ethereum area were some sort of blockchain so that will be easier for the loved ones to access and maintain and actually all the things that anyone wanted, because everyone knows about it, and people would, I would think usually be helpful to keep a deceased person's last wishes.

Amit Sarkar:

I think Facebook does have an option. So just go online and check because they will give you an option to first prove your relationship with the person then that person has passed away and based on the death certificate, and then you can decide what you want to do. And I think they will take that into account if there is no formal will, because of course you have to bear in mind that not everyone is aware that a will should be there in the first place. I mean, we are talking on a podcast where we are not sure how many people are listening to but say about .001% of the population is listening to this podcast. That's a very few number. So a majority of them are not even aware outside this podcast and see lot how many people are actually constantly searching for a will. So a lot of the times lot of the poor people and everyone. So we are actually talking about a very niche population who have access to digital assets, who have a smartphone who bank online and who have such things which needs to be protected.

Rinat Malik:

So digital content as well.

Amit Sarkar:

Yes, exactly.

Rinat Malik:

I mean you might not have a lot of these other things online bank, or whatever, but you might actually create digital contracts in the world as well.

Amit Sarkar:

You're generating revenue from Google ads or whatever. So yeah, so it's important to think about all these things, and I'm pretty sure companies like Google, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, they're all thinking about this thing, because you're right. I mean, what happens to the bank or that I've saved in the Amazon account? Who removes it? What happens to the yearly subscription costs that happens on my OneDrive account? Every year, some money gets deducted from my bank account. What happens to that who reports to the credit agency that okay, I've passed away so stop reporting or creating bad debt? Or who stops reporting to the credit Collection Services who are trying to collect debt from you because you have not paid certain credit cards etc, or certain loans. So how do you ensure all these things happen? So I think companies are thinking about it because what happened is, we had only physical assets with the advent of internet with the advent of smartphones, everything is moving slowly online, and especially with COVID. We are now talking to people and doing things just online. We don't. I mean, except for groceries, and maybe few other things. Everything. Most of the work that we do is knowledge work. It's not physical work. So if it is knowledge work, it's always done online. And if it is online, it means it's digital. And if it is digital, it means it needs to be protected. It needs to be passed on it needs to be I mean, there has to be a way to pass it on to the next generation. Once you pass just like a physical asset. And a lot of companies have started thinking about it. You can actually download all the data from Google if you want to say delete your account and download all the data. And Google will send you GBs of files, which you can download,

Rinat Malik:

and then you can keep it on your computer. So yeah, there are many things. I mean, we just talked about digital assets. Think about all the hard drives that you have. If you have encrypted it. What happens to those hard drives?

Rinat Malik:

On the other side of it, if you do encrypt, Andy wouldn't like anyone else to see what happens to them. There's those content in your hard drive which are offline and we think that they're not online and it's all good, but what happens to, to do?

Amit Sarkar:

That should be in a locker.

Rinat Malik:

So yeah, I mean, if you want to keep their hard drive, external hard drive in a vault in a locker, that's not the story. But yeah, I mean, these are these are important questions to think about. So I mean, we're not we're not coming up to you guys with a solution with like a coherent solution. But what we are urging us to do is to think about it and take some sort of action. I mean, if at the very least, you could go to that Facebook settings where you at least nominate someone. And when you try to do that, then a lot of thoughts will come to you that okay, this also needs to happen or not, and things like that. So, yeah, it's thought provoking and also action provoking, hopefully, that you would take some action. It doesn't have to be a very detailed, you know, a very like comprehensive list of things that you have to do what I can do for you know, a list of passwords, but do something or start by doing something and then see where you end up, but it's definitely something to keep in keep in your mind.

Amit Sarkar:

Definitely. And thank you so much for listening, everyone. It's it was a great conversation Rinat. I think we covered a lot of important things and I hope the listeners and the viewers who are watching this video, take away something and try implementing some part of it in their lives. Because I think it is very important. If you care about your loved ones you would think about these things. And you would make sure that it's done properly, so that it doesn't end up in a feud or in a fight or something like that or a court case. You don't want that to happen. So you want everything to be sorted before you pass on before you pass away. So that things are taken care of. So yeah, thanks again for tuning in. And hope to see you guys for the next one.

Rinat Malik:

Absolutely, thank you very much. Guys. See you later.