It seems like only yesterday since Satoshi minted Bitcoin’s genesis block. Since then, blockchain technology has grown up — from the proverbial cradle to adolescence, in short order. As difficult as it may be to believe, Bitcoin would now be a teenager were it a person. Over the past few short years, the world has witnessed growing and accelerating Bitcoin adoption, which has led in turn to the further creation and adoption of yet more digital assets.
Due to multiple recent systemic failures in the traditional financial world at that time, the public was also coming to terms with a general loss of faith in the status quo. Younger investors and the disillusioned made a hard break for the exits. Rather than continue to put faith in the banks and Wall Street, many instead jumped headlong into cryptocurrencies. Digital assets are no longer just the curious science project of a bunch of intellectually precocious math nerds. Now they have gone prime time.
They Grow Up So Fast
We have arrived at a watershed moment in the market, where digital representations of value — made possible by distributed ledger technology — will begin to become the new standard for all forms of private property. The implications can only be approximated and guessed at, and may prove to be as far-reaching as the enclosure movement.
With large institutional players like Fidelity showing enough faith in digital assets to begin to sell them to their customers, it is only a matter of time before much wider retail adoption finally arrives. Once that happens, digital assets will touch and affect the lives of everyone plugged into the global economy. Brace yourselves. The transition to an entire world of digital assets is upon us.
Those twenty- and thirty-somethings who became early adopters of digital assets are now aging into midlife. The consequence here is as simple as it is profound. As the average age of digital asset holders inevitably and irrevocably rises, the likelihood that issues of the inheritance of digital assets become a certainty. To wit, as of February of 2022, experts estimate that at least $100B in Bitcoin alone has been lost to the ages. The sheer magnitude of that value is staggering.
Chuck Palahniuk once wrote, “On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.” For our purposes, we are interested in how this realization affects our financial planning. At some point, the assets people will have spent years accumulating will need to pass along to the next generation of asset holders. As digital assets have begun to achieve broad adoption, that simple fact also now extends to digital assets.
No one ever relishes discussing estate planning. The topic itself is unpleasant. No matter how you cut it, estate planning requires coming to terms with the one inescapable reality about life — at some point, it all comes to an end. We know that holders are getting older. As they get older, they will need to find both safe and easy solutions for passing along their financial heritage.
Frankly, the problem is hardly a new one. Ever since a single cryptocurrency adoptee managed to die without a succession plan, it has been an ever-present danger facing the entire market. Finally, it has gotten some attention.
So far, very few people have endeavored to deal with this problem. Whether digital assets had not yet proven their efficacy or their network growth sufficiently to spark interest or activity on this issue, or it was a mere accidental oversight on the part of the market, the result has been no real advance in this area.
This is no idle concern. Already, respected figures in the estate planning world have raised warnings about this very issue. Recently, John Gill and Maeve Lochrie of Matheson — a major Dublin-based international law firm — recently wrote the following:
“If a cryptocurrency owner dies without having an appropriate succession plan in place about the succession of their cryptocurrency — including very specific and clear instructions for their executors/heirs with regard to access to online exchanges, digital wallets, and private keys — there is an almost certain risk that valuable assets could be lost forever on the death of that individual.
Further, owners of cryptocurrencies should think about trusted third parties to assist their executors/heirs with accessing and dealing with their cryptocurrencies after their death. It may well be the case that the nominated executors/heirs have a detailed knowledge about the workings of cryptocurrencies, but unless the owner specifically knows this to be the case, they should not make the mistake of imputing their knowledge about a complex asset class to their nominated executors/heirs. In addition, executors should be granted appropriate powers in testamentary documents to deal with this particular type of asset class.”
We here at Serenity Shield could not have phrased it better. In fact, our project aims at rectifying this entire constellation of problems. making the transition to ANY form of a digital asset much easier to manage.
No Solution… Until Now
Serenity Shield’s ‘StrongBox’ solution aims directly at facilitating all manner of digital asset security and succession, both on the blockchain and beyond. While estate planning is only one application of this sort of solution, the Serenity Shield team is dedicated to developing this niche fully. As the world moves to a significantly more digitized base asset layer, our solution will become absolutely necessary.
As Serenity Shield builds our entire suite of digital security solutions, we will extend our reach through extensive cross-chain compatibility and functionality. Ultimately, our goal is to become chain-agnostic, providing our users the ability to access their StrongBox from multiple chains. No matter what, our users can rest assured that their financial futures are in the best hands possible — their own.
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