15 Oct My Digital Footprint
As a Millennial whose parents met while working for IBM, I can’t remember a time when I didn’t have a computer in my home. Growing up in the age of the Internet, I’ve always had access to Google (or AskJeeves, back in the 90’s). I watched as my parents celebrated the success of the dotcom boom, nervously anticipated the Y2K bug and suffered tremendously during the recession of 2008.
My elementary years were spent on Neopets.com and AOL kid chat rooms, my middle school years in late-night AIM or Live Journal sessions, and my high school years were spent on Myspace and Facebook. Needless to say, I’ve grown up with the Internet and the dangers that surround it.
At home, our moms warned us of online predators and “bad guys”. At school, teachers reminded us not to give personal information to strangers. Still, we escaped to our bedrooms at night and logged online before bed.
It’s incredible, really, to think about my involvement with the Internet before I even turned 18. It’s even scarier to know my 11-year-old sister already has an Instagram account. The reality is everyone who is alive today (and is able to use a keyboard) has a digital footprint. This week’s assignment centered around finding mine.
I used Google to search my first and last name, Kimberly Devitt, and discovered I’ve developed quite an online presence. As a digital marketing professional, I expected my social media profiles to appear on the Google search rankings. Sure enough, my Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Instagram profiles ranked highest. Using Google’s “images” tab, I found pictures my sorority sisters, video clips from my contributions to DrivetheNation.com and a great photo of my dog, Frankie.
I used Google to search my first and last name, Kimberly Devitt, and discovered I’ve developed quite an online presence.
I was not entirely surprised by my findings, but did appreciate the reality check. Virtually anything published online can become public, so it’s important to be aware of the digital footprint you’re leaving. Now it’s your turn. Google your name and let me know what you find.