I'm curious on how others have planned around this?
Either one of us can assume responsibility for the entire estate in about an hour or so, the only delay would be a life insurance benefit payout. If you have assets that your partner might not know how to facilitate liquidity for, or when to, pay someone you trust to manage that. Your gift to your family is when you leave the world, they can continue on without fumbling to wrap up loose ends.
Collate this same information, encrypt it and then use [a key sharing algorithm](https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shamir%27s_Secret_Sharing) to split this encryption key across a set of semi-trusted contacts.
Those friendships might outlive any romantic partnership I do have in future. So I don't think it has to be a partner specifically. Of course, there are still some things that you might not share as openly even with that trust in place, but that doesn't stop you from having a backup plan.
If you have family, extremely close friends (as adults, life-long friends), these can be options. Consider keeping your 'binder' in a safe deposit box and setting up access via your bank.
If not, an attorney or even CPA may be able to keep this information for you.
If you don't have anyone you will leave your assets to, the attorney will be the one liquidating your estate as per your will.
What is the process for revoking this access in the event of a less than amicable split between partners?
“What was the password?”, “Where’s the Yubikey?”, etc. These are not the failure scenarios you want to encounter during a tragedy (speaking from experience).
Anyway, I'm just saying that things you think are safe, really aren't. It's inconceivable that two houses across town from each other would burn down on the same day, until they do. Probably not going to happen, but sometimes it does.
Thankfully, my wife grabbed the binder with accounts and passwords, along with the kids and pets, when she evacuated, while I was stuck on a backed-up freeway an hour away.
I've been very conscientious since then about keeping both a physical and digital copy of everything important. I would never trust digital alone, but a physical copy just isn't reliable enough.
A street is a firebreak. An earthquake might level you and them but a fire won't necessarily.
I don't want people to proceed with the notion that those safes are actually fire-proof. Consider them 'fire-resistant' safes that conditionally offer some extra protection.
I was astonished to see that over 50% of the photos had some sort of bit rot that broke the JPG rendering. Many photos would display correctly at the top until the row where the damage occurs and then display grey for the remainder.
This definitely occurs more than you would think on USB keys.
A bank safety deposit box is a good backup plan for the home binder.
The benefit of the binder over (or in addition to) the secret manager is it maximizes the chances your family can successfully access your data. I've designated family members as the emergency access contacts for my password manager, but one member completely forgot I even used a password manager, or what it was called. They would never have looked for my data there in an emergency.
Indeed, when it comes to stuff like finances, at least where I live, touching them post-death creates issues when the legal channels confirming there’s no contest over next-of-kin haven’t been run to ground. In those situations, having a password means nothing.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prep a will and have processes in place, but it gave me a lot of reassurance that I did not need to worry so much about this.
Documentation in the form of "I have a bank account at Bank X, and a will at Lawyer Y (or, I don't have a will, but there are established protocols to handle this)" (even if only verbally) is different than "here's my username and password to my trading account in case I snuff it".
Obviously, it would have been much less of a hassle if we'd had the account information from the beginning, but there were much more annoying problems to deal with than deactivating Netflix.
If you're really concerned about this, make sure you have a will in place and beneficiaries defined on your financial accounts. That is probably just as important as making sure your dependents have immediate access to your money.
I settled for writing the master key in a physical file to be delivered to a trusted contact in case of my demise along with registering the fingerprint of my trusted contact to my smartphone(all of which has since been revoked). Bitwarden's Emergency Access addresses this problem in a much safer way.
I didn't think about credit card access then, but in my case I think shareholders could have legally taken over the startup and thereby getting access to all the online subscriptions; what wouldn't have been feasible was accessing the private encrypted data hence the 'need for secure key transfer after death'.
 https://www.needgap.com/problems/27-secure-transfer-of-encry... (Disclaimer: My problem validation platform where I had posted this problem a while ago).
But I did survive, but had to shutdown my startup anyways.
For passwords and such, she has a Bitwarden account too and we share all important passwords (finances, medical, etc) in a shared organization between the two of us.
I had resisted doing anything with the shared passwords prior to this because the process to unshare an account is to delete it from the organization and make a new entry on your personal vault.
Ultimately the blame is on me but the process for unsharing is broken. I guess the moral is to just be careful about sharing accounts in a BW org if you ever expect you might have to undo all of them. It was about 15 accounts in all because we had also shared everything related to financial institutions and health care. I did take the time to change each of them as well since there was no way of knowing what may have been copied.
A more user friendly approach would be for the entry’s ownership to always remain with the original creator and simply share that entry with the organization. You could then later revoke sharing the entry with others or the organization. This is how almost every other file sharing works.
I’m sure there are underlying issues, especially since the goal is for it to be cryptographically secure, it’s just not a very user friendly system and as I said it’s ultimately my own fault what happened to me.
I think as another commenter said we’re complaining about the wrong piece of the flow. Important accounts like utilities should have a mechanism where as many users as necessary are tied to an address. In many households it will be one user but in some it might need to be 2, or in the case of roommates 2+.
We can have multiple users tied to our mobile phone service provider so why not the gas or electric?
glad to see things like these are cropping up, there's a need for sure.
If you 2FA the email account, you risk locking you and them out permanently for many services. I've written some about this. If you care to read it:
Also, if you 2FA other things and aren't really careful, you may lock them out even if they know the password and/or are able to reset it. That is by design.
This problem is growing larger every year as more sites enable or mandate 2FA. It's impossible for humans to manage this at scale.
My partner knows how to unlock my phone. She can read the eventual SMS (I know, it's insecure, but still the only 2FA method in many US bansk), she will receive the email with the eventual password reset on the phone, she can use my authenticator apps. She also knows about my Yubikeys and where they are stored.
She also has access to my laptop, where backups for the above are stored.
Still need to write a licence permitting her to release all my IP into the public domain.
If we travel together with wife on something like plane we ensure that our wills, that have the same information as above are shared with relatives.
* the wife can request access to my account. I'll get email notificarion. If I wont reject it in given time period the access will be given
It's been a slow start but hoping it picks up and we can get it onto the Apple store.
My mother has the releaser email and the email itself goes to my partner.
I've always wondered if I should do more. What are the downsides of relying only on wills and beneficiaries? What might I be missing with this super basic estate planning?
Should the family have to setup new netflix accounts with new watch history tracking because the primary account holder passed away? Given how long it would take for the cc's to get cancelled and netflix to notice, would it be smart for your kids or partner to get that kind of gut wrenching reminder of what was lost months after your death?
What issues would simple wills and beneficiaries have in probate? And how does giving someone access to my passwords avoid those issues?
Same question reformulated: “What’s the one thing you need to compromise to get into my entire digital domain?”
Then put the password to that somewhere safe for people to have.
In Firefox extension:
1. There is no memory. If you close the window, to copy the password, you have to re-search for the account to find the username.
2. If you open up bitwarden before the page is loaded, it says it can't find the password box to fill in. This is probably an extension limitation, but still annoying.
1. No memory. If I search for a username, I have to re-search for the password. It always opens up to the search screen (when I am using it via the password helper keyboard).
2. iOS the keyboard doesn't always show up to let me search for an account via password helper keyboard.
1. You should be able to set a default username or email to automatically use when creating a new account. I hate having to type my email address in every time when creating the account on mobile.
2. When you're registering an account on a website, I first create it in Bitwarden with a password then I paste the password into the textbox to register the account. If the website rejects the password cuz of formatting, I gotta go back into bitwarden, edit and update the password with the new format. it takes like 5 clicks. ugh.
Thanks for listening.
> 2. If you open up bitwarden before the page is loaded, it says it can't find the password box to fill in. This is probably an extension limitation, but still annoying.
The sidebar trick above also helps this issue. When it can't find the password box you just click the "refresh" icon on the Bitwarden sidebar and it'll fill it in. This limitation may be by design so it doesn't have constant access to everything you browse, only allows a "snapshot" of the HTML to fill in when loaded (or refreshed) - complete guess though.
Recently summarized the issue plus previous reports in here: https://community.bitwarden.com/t/unsaved-changes-are-lost-w...
I'd used LastPass before and believe their solution is plan obvious, it just works. So that's what I suggested Bitwarden to do: opening up a new tab with all the extension UI for data entry, instead of depending on the volatile state of a pop-up window.
EDIT: I misread and thought the issue was with the data entry! but now I understand that parent meant manually copying username & password from the extension to a website. While I never do that (autofill seems to work fine for me), the same proposed solution still applies, I guess.
I think that might be a mobile limitation. Profiles address that problem but I'm not sure if Android or iOS give developers the ability to autofill profiles.
Bitwarden's UX is pretty poor but the way I see it is that's what $12 a year gets me. :)
Hmm, I've tried LastPass, Enpass, a handful of Keepass clients I can't remember the name of and (shortly) 1Password, and I can't really find anything Bitwarden does that much worse than any of these. To be perfectly honest, they're all kind of clunky, IMHO.
I feel like I can think of a lot but I'll give you one that, to me, is Bitwarden in a nutshell:
What happens if you open your browser, go to https://news.ycombinator.com/login, and hit Bitwarden's autofill shortcut? Nothing, because you didn't log in to Bitwarden first. Pretty much every other password manager will ask you to log in and then they'll autofill.
Natively integrated password managers like Firefox or Chrome are in a much better position to push for UX but you can see they aren’t that much better either.
It's not a bad idea but you could also set up an identity, perhaps call it "New sign up", and it'll fill out the email address for you with two clicks - one to open Bitwarden, one to auto-fill.
I'm still hesitant to use any form of password management that relies on cloud services. I still like Keepass (with auto-updates disabled for security because their updater uses HTTP, of course), for my purposes. I can Sync my keepass file any number of secure ways that don't rely on a single provider.
They provide a selfhosted alternative to their cloud service.
Not only that, there is a rust based birwarden server reimplementation that doesn't phone home (IIRC I believe the official self-hosted server needs an API key?), is compatible with all platform clients (at least for my needs). https://github.com/dani-garcia/bitwarden_rs
I can add her as a emergency contact and she can accept that. But she cannot add me as an emergency contact since it is a premium-only feature.
In the past I've kept an offline copy of my 'vault' on a few USB keys in a safe deposit, for my family in case of death or similar. I'm curious how others have solved this problem.
And actually, the safe-deposit box only holds one half of the decryption key. My loved ones have the other half in their respective safe-storage locations. This means a rogue bank employee can’t drill my box and do anything useful with the contents.
The password vault itself is a plaintext file that I decrypt and edit/grep as needed. I use the OpenSSL command-line tool for encryption and decryption. My loved ones either have this installed by default on MacOS, or have a Cygwin installation on Windows with which I have tested the commands. The safe-deposit box contains short and detailed instructions for use for my non-technical loved ones.
I also use the Google Chrome password manager with client-side encryption enabled. Whenever I change any important passwords, I’ll export its contents to my text file password vault.
How to securely manage it so that only I can open it if my biological self is there? I don't trust bank safe deposit boxes and I can't put a safe worth using inside my Apt.
This would give you protection both against the amnesia route (where you fall unconscious, lose your memory but are totally fine afterwards) and the route where you're unable to manage your secrets at all (eg stroke resulting in longterm failure to maintain memories or make decisions).
You'd still, for the total lose route, need a replacement actor (someone acting on your behalf) to assemble and receive the key, and be the keyholder moving forward - and you would likely need to leave instructions with the flock of people having pieces of the key on how to select or confirm your future keyholder.
Not necessarily. Bank safe-deposit boxes are a secure place to keep secrets. To guard against rogue bank employees, encrypt the stored secrets and keep the key at home on a sticky note. If you ever hit your head and forget all your secrets, just present your ID to the bank teller, pull the secrets out of the vault, and decrypt them with the key on the sticky note.
(I get that we rely on email for stuff like this all the time, but your password manager is part of what protects your email account, which is why we rely on email as much as we do for resets).
> To ensure the integrity of your encryption keys, verify the displayed fingerprint phrase with the grantee before completing confirmation.
> The fingerprint phrase is an important security feature that assists in uniquely and securely identifying a Bitwarden user account when important encryption-related operations are performed (such as sharing).
> When the request is approved or the wait time lapses, the public-key-encrypted Master Key is delivered to grantee for decryption with grantee’s private key.
I'm not quite sure how I feel about the way they're doing this. Whilst this is a feature a lot of people desire, the way that they're doing it makes it feel like it would be impossible to verify that they're not storing your Master Key, or transmitting it to someone else - i.e. backdoor.
At least, not with the level of detail I can find. 
Reminder: bitwarden isn't just an awesome service, it's also committed to open source!
However, what would prevent them sending two public keys, one for your contact, and one for someone else? Or sending the wrong public key?
How is the key exchange itself verified other than "Bitwarden user"?
Those questions aren't answered.
"To ensure the integrity of your encryption keys, verify the displayed fingerprint phrase with the grantee before completing confirmation."
Let people who don't need it and don't want it turn it off, but for me I'd definitely have it on.
It has a column for Secure Sharing, but not one to show granularity.
Ones that make organization easy seem to choose to offer persistent sharing at the vault level (multiple vaults shared to nobody or to different sets of people), easy ways to move items between vaults, and flagging if you have multiple or OOS copies of items.
Careful, most seem to offer per-item share-as-a-copy that the recipient should store, which I wouldn’t consider as counting as the kind of sharing needed for this thread.
I hope that I get an email notification, or I find out through other offline means, if the feature ever gets activated. I hate that something which could have a significant impact on my life, potentially at a difficult time, appears to require running crapware on my own computer.
They are going "web first" and eventually deprecating the desktop app, so you are going to need to reengineer that solution at oe point soon.
I do, however, look forward to the clichéd "you had her change the will just days before her death" in murder mysteries being replaced with "you signed her up for Bitwarden's emergency access just days before her death"…
It’s personally something I love to see.
* there's still no way to keep fetching icons disabled across all devices and instances of bitwarden - each time I have to disable it; I just simply don't like such feature anywhere it's present
* there's no emptying the trash on desktop client and neither in browser addon
* logging in generates email on which your account is registered, which is a good security feature but sometimes it's just... annoying
* import exist only in the web vault interface, while export is present on desktop application and web vault
* despite of having vault unlocking to set with pin, I have to provide password
Still, it's my secondary choice for less important passwords for sites and apps since it works nicely on mobile and isn't limiting features like Enpass which is my main password manager.
You can configure how it locks upon close.
I did have to go to the extension's settings and enable "Run in Private Windows".