If no instructions are given about what to do with someones website once they die you may want to undertake the following tasks:
- Speak with other friends and family members who might know what the deceased’s wishes were.
- Find out if the website / blog is self hosted (paid for) or hosted for free.
- If the website is self hosted make sure that the hosting is paid for to ensure that it remains live.
- Ensure sure that the deceased’s URL (website address) and hosting is paid for. Generally speaking (paid for) hosting is paid for each month and the URL will need to be renewed every year or two years. You might need to update the payment method for both the website / blog and the renewal of any URLs.
- If you do not know who the URL was registered through or where the website is hosted use the tool ‘WhoIs‘. Simply add the domains URL into the search box to search for the details.
- Try and find out the username and password for the website. Once obtained you or a friend will be able to update the website on the deceased’s behalf. Tasks may include sending out a blog post stating that the website author has died and/or updating the website’s design, content management system etc.
- Once again Whois will tell you which company is hosting the website and who the URL was purchased through. Once known you may want to call their support team and explain your situation.
- If you cannot obtain access you might want to create a visual copy of the deceased’s website or blog using a tool like ‘Site Sucker‘. This will let you scrape the text, images, PDFs, style sheets, and other files to your local hard drive. *This will not backup the website/blog but you will have some of the content from it.
What to do if a website by the deceased has been removed
If you are trying to access the website of the deceased and it no longer appears we recommend that you first use ‘WhoIs’ and contact the hosting provider. If the website or blog has been permanently deleted by the hosting provider and no backups exist you may want to view the ‘Internet Archive‘ to see if a copy of it still exists. https://archive.org/index.php.
Support from us
If you follow the guide above and still require assistance feel free to get in touch.
Making plans for your blog or website.
To make plans for your own blog or website download our free social media will template. Once completed, share this document with someone you trust. You may also want to contact your hosting and URL provider and ask them “how can I officially grant access to my next of kin ensuring that they will have access to my website and URL should I die before them”. You may want to explain what your wishes are for your website or blog to your hosting and URL providers.