Apple Rolls Out That Feature That Lets You Assign Your Data When You Die

Apple Rolls Out That Feature That Lets You Assign Your Data When You Die
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Ever wondered what happens to your data when you die? It’s a pretty morbid question, but it’s one Apple is helping answer. Apple is today rolling out a new feature to iOS known as Digital Legacy.

First introduced at WWDC earlier this year, the Digital Legacy program allows users to designate up to five people as Legacy Contacts, allowing them to pass down their data and personal information stored in iCloud in the event they pass away.


The feature has been in beta since Apple announced it earlier this year, but now, with the release of iOS 15.2, users have the ability to assign their Digital Legacy.

Anyone you select as an administrator will be able to sign into your account through a dedicated legacy contact Apple ID. They will also require an access key to see anything that is password protected on your devices.

They will be able to access and download anything you have stored in iCloud, including photos and videos.

It’s worth noting that selected Apple Digital Legacy contacts won’t be able to access any payment information or logins you have stored via Keychain.

While I no doubt have some questionable data attached to my name, and I wholeheartedly trust my best friend, I would like the option to choose what exactly she has access to if I was to pass away. But for now, Apple Digital Legacy includes everything.

How do I set up Apple Digital Legacy?

How to add a Legacy Contact: 

On your iOS device, go to Settings > [your name] > Password & Security. On your Mac, go to System Preferences > Apple ID > Password & Security.

Under Legacy Contact, you can see the options and follow the instructions to add a Legacy Contact. If you use Family Sharing, you can choose a family member from the list, or you can add someone else using their email or phone number. They don’t need to also use iOS, but it does make this process easier.

How to notify your Legacy Contact and share an access key:

If both you and your chosen person are using the Digital Legacy software that includes Legacy Contact options, you can notify them via Messages when you add them. If they accept, they automatically store a copy of the access key in their Apple ID settings.

You’ll receive a notification if they choose to decline being a Legacy Contact, and you can choose someone else (ouch).

You can also decide to add more than one Legacy Contact.

What if my Legacy Contact uses Android?

If you add a Legacy Contact who isn’t using the software, they won’t have access to the Legacy Contact settings on their device. You can, however, print the access key and give it to them, send them a PDF of the page or save a copy with other important documentation, such as estate planning info.

Your Legacy Contact must have a copy of this access key to get access to your account after you pass away, however.

Here’s some kittens for something less morbid to think about.