> This method works because your mum is never going to go into conspiracy with your business partner to gain access to your information.
Unless your mom is Lucille Bluth.
I think a better way would be to have one person click 'Mark is dead' and it immediately sends an email to Mark saying 'Joe says you're dead.' If Mark doesnt' access the account within x days, then it sends further confirmation emails to Mom and business partner who also have to confirm that Mark is dead. If so, then it set 'Mark = dead' and opens the vaults as Mark configured.
I had this idea too. I was going to build it until I looked for a good domain. In the process I ran into: http://www.ifidie.org/ -- which had already implemented it well enough.
Note the idea is applicable to far more than "relatives when I die".. e.g. root password for the server when you're sick in the hospital. Also, remember that many people don't want their estate documents to be viewed pre-death (e.g. don't want people to know how much they're getting), and letting people know where you put them / how to contact the lawyer in a reliable way is a hassle in and of itself.
But why would I pay $500 once to get something done right when I could pay $10 every month to get something that will almost certainly fold before I do?
(Although that does leave me with one practical issue: if I go to my trustworthy small town lawyer tomorrow and say "Hiya Taro [he's not Bob -- Bobs are quite rare in these parts], in the event that I pass away suddenly, I'd like you to take care of my final affairs as I'm about to instruct you:", and Taro gets hit by a bus, what happens to my plan? Should I be asking my lawyers "But before I give you my business can I ask you a little more about your business continuity contingency planning? How about we start with your bus number?")
1 person has responded - the person who clicked the button. If nobody else agrees, then I would say the data stays locked. Otherwise the one person could simply wait for a moment where everyone traveled and had no email access.
Which basically means to say that the entire security of the site is based on the ability of my designates to have my best interests at heart... and also not to have installed a spam filter, moved, changed email or otherwise become unreachable to a service that pretty much becomes forgettable after 6 months or so.
I'd much rather trust myself to manage things, to be honest.
I knew a few people who had a "if you read this, I am dead" cronjob setup on their machine: if they wouldn't log in by a certain time, an email would be sent saying that they're dead. Of courses there were cases where people would simply forget about these cronjobs and send email needlessly worrying the people they cared about (and possibly getting themselves 5150'd).
that's different, but do you really need to worry the people you care about like this? bad news travels fast and if you do need to call for help there are ways slightly more person than a cronjob (though this sort of a cronjob message won't get you 5150'd, which generally makes whatever problems one has worse).