Introducing the cyber funeral

The funeral is as old as man itself. For instance, archaeologists have found the burial grounds of Neanderthals in Iraq dating back to 60,000 BC. Antlers were positioned on the bodies, along with remains of flowers indicating some type of ritual and the provision of votive offerings to the deceased.

Fast forward 80,000 years and today it isn’t uncommon to have two funerals. One for your body and departed soul and another for your online profile. Cyber funerals are now a thing and are carried out to close down social media accounts, manage search engine results and stop identity fraudsters from virtually resurrecting the deceased for their own personal gain.

Research shows that the bereaved are becoming increasingly concerned that dormant accounts can get hacked and the personal information of the deceased used for fraudulent purposes or sold on the dark web to the highest bidder. We discovered recently that the death date of an individual commands a premium of 0.000277 bitcoin per record on the dark web – showing that it’s highly prized information.

In the past many people have opted to maintain social media profiles or put up in memoriam pages, however, as more instances of deceased ID fraud are reported there is a marked trend to delete the digital footprint in order to protect the deceased’s identity and save the feelings of those left behind when having to deal with the aftermath of the fraudulent activity.

In most cases the Internet has enhanced our lives, but sadly in others, it can prove to be a final nail in the coffin.