Digital Identities and Digital Security

Written Summation: Week 2, Digital Identities and Digital Security.

As Jennifer Howell divulges “The way we are perceived digitally is often how we are judged and we are often not given any recourse to explain ourselves” (2014). The internet, and social media especially, are too often seen as posing threats to the security of our young generation. When will we, as educators and parents, begin to highlight the benefits of such technology as the provider of new opportunities, enhancing the learning experiences of students in our classrooms (Buckingham and Willett, 2013).

Social media communication concept

Figure 1: Digital Media (Unknown).

As digital citizens we need to be aware of our digital footprints, the traceable evidence we leave each time we go online, and must act responsibly when using technology (Dotterer, Hedges and Parker, 2016). The permanent nature of our digital footprints and identities is something that needs to be highlighted for our students. With an ever-present digital identity, children need to understand that their online activity can affect things such as their higher education acceptances, future job prospects as well as friendships and social elements with the presence of online bullying. Whilst being a digitally native generation, our students require guidance in recognising online threats, making informed decisions based on the sharing of personal information whilst online and the understanding that “what goes online, stays online” (Dotterer, Hedges and Parker, 2016). In order to raise respectable digital citizens we must constantly educate our students on digital etiquette, stemming from, but not limited to; choices made before posting information online, the development of social media pages and their privacy settings, digital security issues of bullying, identity theft and scammers and also how to validate information they come across online.


Figure 2: Digital footprint (Unknown).

Teachers and parents must work together to ensure that children become as digitally aware as possible through all stages of their schooling. Digital responsibility should be emphasised throughout the curriculum and students should be aware of the consequences for breaking policies and misusing online platforms.

List of references

Buckingham, D & Willett, R. (2013). Digital Generations: Children, Young People and New Media. New York, USA: Routledge. Retrieved from:

Dotterer, G., Hedges, A. & Parker, H. (2016). Fostering Digital Citizenship in the Classroom. Education Digest, Vol 82 Issue 3. Retrieved from

Howell, J. (2014). Living and Learning in the Digital World: Mod1, Topic 2 New Version. . Curtin University. Retrieved from

Digital footprint. (Unknown). Retrieved from

Digital Media. (Unknown). Retrieved from





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