By: Angelica Urbina

What is a Digital Footprint?

  • A digital footprint is a data trail that is created while using the internet and it includes the websites you visit, emails that were previously sent, and previously submitted information on online servers.
  • "Passive Digital Footprint" is an unintentional data trail left online such as when a website saves your IP address without you knowing which is still a part of your digital footprint.
  • "Active Digital Footprint" includes data that is intentionally submitted online such as sending emails or posting online much like this blog post!
  • One's digital footprint is very important in a variety of ways. When applying for college, admission offices look at what you have previously posted. That is why it's important to keep track and keep your profile clear of any inappropriate pictures or posts. Along with colleges, future employers also look into these social media sites to make sure their employees show responsibility and maturity.

What impact does your digital footprint have on your future?

Your digital footprint impacts your future career and where you may be able to attend school due to the quality of your social media sites such as things you post, share, or send. That is what future employers look at to see what kind of person you are and that is why it is important to keep track of what you post and make sure that whenever you post, it is something you would want college admission offices to see to show your maturity. It's

helpful when you give yourself a positive footprint and people see how responsible you are while enjoying your posts. This can help decide if you get a job or not or if you get accepted into that dream university! It is harmful when you don't keep watch of what you post or show any sort of decency online.

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TIps to improve your online identity

  • Start by deleting any photos you deem inappropriate.
  • Also delete things that others may not be impressed by. Then be conscientious of what you are posting in the future and think about who might see it.

  • Create new accounts to create a better online identity and dedicate it to positive posts. It would also be wise to get any friends to remove any posts of you that you don't approve of to avoid any trouble at a new job or applying for college.
  • For me specifically, I could delete some retweeted pictures or tweets from my page that are somewhat inappropriate
  • Another thing I could do is unfollow some people who don't share the best posts and retweet some inappropriate stuff, which later shown up on MY NEWS FEED.

What I learned

The most important thing that I think I learned was to clean up my social media sites to improve my digital footprint. This also made me conscious of my decisions such as what I post. I think before tagging someone in a funny video or a photo to avoid ruining their online identity, which is something I hope other people do for me. I learned that colleges actually do look into their applicants and what they've done online. I do not want to jeopardize my chance to go to great school over something as silly as a funny picture! After learning about this, I went on to delete some social media accounts such as my twitter and start a new one to create a more positive image for myself so future employers can see my maturity.