Digital Identities and Digital Security

A digital identity is a way in which an individual portrays themselves on digital media. Uploading photos, commenting on articles and posting blogs are all ways that contribute to an individual’s digital identity.  All of the information an individual sends out online should be censored.  Why? Because once something is posted online there is a minimal chance that the material can be retracted and deleted.  (Howell, 2014).  This could have a negative impact on an individual’s reputation.  There is also the issue of online hackers and scammers.  Lack of security awareness can lead to digital identities being hacked and private information being released to the public.

(Common Sense Education, 2013)

This is where digital security comes into play.

Tranberg, (2014) suggests creating separate online identities for professional and personal use. So, what can I, as a teacher do to help my students avoid any negativity or security issues with their digital identity?  It is easy to say that primary aged school students don’t need to worry about a professional identity just yet, however, they do need to be mindful that anything they post online, can have an impact on their digital identity in their future.  Students should also be aware that releasing too much personal information can lead to cyber-bullying.  I can also assist my students by educating them on safe practices when using the internet.  Some practices include;

  • create more than one identity
  • post comments on articles or YouTube videos anonymously
  • always logoff devices when finished
  • update passwords often
  • always tell an adult if they are uncomfortable or are worried about anything they have seen online.
digital footprint

(We all leave a digital footprint, 2011)

This video on Digital Footprints, would be fun and informative to show primary aged students to help them achieve a deeper understanding of why it’s important to be security conscious and to really think about what they post online.



Bray, O. (2011, March 20). We all leave a digital footprint [Image]. Retrieved from

Common Sense Education. (2013, August 12). Digital footprint animation [Video file]. Retrieved from

Common Sense Education. (2015, July 14). Follow the digital trail [Video file]. Retrieved from

Howell, J. (2014, April 14). Living and Learning in the Digital World Mod01 topic 02. Retrieved from

Tranberg, P. (2014, 4 10). Fake It – to control your digital identity [Video file]. Retrieved from


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