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Digital Footprint Management - Why is it so Important?

A digital footprint is the record of digital activity connected to a user’s web browsing. In schools, this is an important concept to teach children throughout K through 12 education. Learning the concepts of digital footprints and how data can be saved and shared online encourages responsible internet use and digital citizenship for students.

Digital footprints can be accessed through the browsing history view of an individual device or account, but also as part of the external IP account where the network management is able to monitor digital footprint activity within the network.

Managing Active Digital Footprints

An active digital footprint involves the information users share online in social media profiles, online forums, and by accepting cookies on a website.

The active digital footprint can have an important impact on the future of students. Future employers and colleges use the records of active digital footprints to make choices on hiring and acceptances. Ensuring all students know the potential ramifications of online activity is therefore an important method of preparing for the future which will be increasingly integrated with online worlds.

Children's information is protected under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Schools have the responsibility to ensure that students understand and are empowered to protect their own data and personal information just as the school does. Regular IT security lessons, reminders from teachers, and automated content filtering software to restrict access to inappropriate or untrusted sites are vital for any educational institution.

Managing Passive Digital Footprints

A passive digital footprint is a more indirect way that student safety and privacy may be compromised. When accessing sites, data is collected from the IP address history including associated locations, and recorded browsing activity such as visits to the site and interactions with the webpage including likes, shares, and comments.

This data is commonly used for targeted advertising and content algorithms that can impact online behavior. Preventing access to sites that use this data harvesting with automated filters as part of school digital safeguarding software reduces the number of places where passive digital footprints can be used, keeping student behavior secure and private.

Schools have a responsibility to keep students safe online, protecting them from exposure to harmful websites that can damage student mental health and impact digital footprints for both the child and the school.

Safeguarding and content filtering software using the latest searches and websites to block for kids’ safety is the best way to keep your digital footprints clean from inappropriate web activity. The restricted website list is updated every month to keep schools safe from rising threats and keep on track of new issues.

Improve Education on Digital Footprints

The Senso Learning Management System (LMS) includes pre-made modules to teach educators the basics of safeguarding and how to communicate effective internet safety with students. As a modular, customizable LMS, schools can also set up their own guidelines and protocols for staff onboarding training so that your students learn the same information and advice for the best practices for digital footprint management.

Providing comprehensive protection systems for students using technology in the classroom and outside of it helps instill positive habits in kids. Digital citizenship plays a role in how students will interact with the world, especially as it becomes more and more integrated into education, work, and life in general.

An extra layer of protection for immediately preventing contact with harmful content online and comprehensive and regular reporting systems with weekly rundowns of alerts across the school network help to maintain knowledge of the activities and awareness of digital footprint management across institutions.

If your school is looking to upgrade to a comprehensive safeguarding and education management platform, you can get your Free Demo of Senso’s school software solutions and discover more helpful and innovative tools and techniques to keep your students safe.