Before we go into it… what is your Digital Footprint?
To put it simply, it’s a record or trail left of things that you have done online, including your social media activity, online shopping, and website browsing. It is pretty much anything with your name attached to it.
From super sophisticated phishing emails, to your prospective employers observing your social media… managing your footprint has never been more important.
Remember, the web is gathering information every time you use it. This is why it is so important to understand what you are leaving behind.
Here are some top tips on how you can manage your Digital Footprint…
- Use Privacy Settings
Review all of your social media privacy settings. You should be specifically vigilant on Facebook, as this seems to host the most sharing of personal information.
However, always be aware that Privacy Settings will not always protect you, for example “Friends” can still download your images and use your information.
- Don’t keep old accounts
Specifically, old email accounts.
A good way to manage this is by keeping a list of all online accounts, from e-commerce to corporate emails.
- Don’t over-share information
Once this information is out there digitally, it’s like publishing forever… the internet never forgets.
Avoid sharing too much personal information, venting or engaging in arguments.
- Google yourself
…you may be surprised what you (or prospective Employers) might find?!
Review the first 2 pages thoroughly – is it all positive? Do they show you as professional and respectable?
- Update your software regularly
A lot of viruses and malware programs are designed to “mine” your Digital Footprint – to protect yourself, make sure your software, specifically your antivirus software, is up to date.
Any out of date software is easier to target and more vulnerable.
- Consider using digital tools to manage our Digital Footprint
There are a range of browser extensions and app add-ons you can use to limit the capture of your personal information.