Can you access the cell phone / tablet / computer?
Many people lock their smartphone, tablet or computer with a password. The fact that the device is locked posthumously doesn’t necessarily mean that the intention was that the specific device and its content should remain locked after death. Often, people simply do not think about what might happen with those devices should they die; neither do they consider the significance that their content may have for their love ones should they die.
In the case that you do decide to access a loved one’s device and it is password protected, you should check with family members or friends, as it is possible that someone knows it.
If this is unsuccessful, you can use the services of laboratories that specialize in accessing locked devices, or call on the services of technicians who will most likely be able to bypass the password. If the device is damaged, there are also professional laboratories that specialize in restoring information, even when devices are broken, have gotten wet, burned etc.
If you do succeed in unlocking the device, what then? You should stop for a moment again. Just as you would be prepared (and would prepare yourself) for the difficult experience of entering the room/apartment/house of the deceased for the first time after their death, you must be similarly prepared for the difficult experience of accessing the phone/tablet/computer that belonged to the dead person. These are very personal and private spaces.
(Taken from Death In The Digital Era: A Useful Guide by Vered Shavit, ‘Digital Dust’ www.digitaldustblog.com. March 2nd 2015)