Identity Theft is Not a Joke, Jim!

Identity Theft is Not a Joke, Jim!

When I Google “Ashley Cox”, there are about 70.5 million hits, and I’m nowhere to be found. Only when I Google my name with either my hometown or the province of Saskatchewan I get a handful of results that are actually me. Most of the results of me are news articles from when I was mostly in college (nothing criminal, if anyone’s wondering!). One result is from my name being on a list of scholarship recipients; another is about a group trip to London, England, for a Macroeconomics class, and one article that my hometown newspaper did on people from the area who graduated from Lakeland College in 2012. A few years later, in 2016, my hometown newspaper interviewed me about evacuating from the forest fires in Fort McMurray, Alberta. My grandfather’s obituary and an article on my dad’s new job also came up when I Googled my name. I have a tiny digital footprint. 

I have always firmly believed in not posting too much about my life online. Even when I was a teenager, I didn’t post a lot. However, I still managed to post a few cringe teen posts in my day. In the past year (April 2023 – April 2024), I have posted a total of four things on my social media. Scrolling through my feed, I realize I had a year-long hiatus after a post I shared in August 2022 and didn’t post anything until September 2023. I find this interesting, as I can’t remember a day when I didn’t use any social media apps. 

Image from Adobe Stock

Through EDTC 300, I realized that having a digital footprint is desirable. 

“While digital footprints are considered to be a liability, if managed well they can be an asset. Digital footprints can showcase identity, skills and interests. This is important in an era where employers “google” candidates to check their identity and verify their suitability. In this context, having no digital footprint can be as much of a disadvantage as having a poorly managed one.” (Why children should be taught to build a positive online presence)

Here is a list of ways to build your digital footprint:

  1. Create a blog
  2. Have public social media accounts (Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, Twitter/X, etc.)
  3. Create a YouTube channel
  4. Promote your blog, social media accounts and YouTube channel
  5. Post photos of events you attend or host
  6. Create a LinkedIn profile to connect with professionals
  7. Share content on social media frequently


Why is a digital footprint significant?


Just remember, “Big Brother is watching you.”

3 thoughts on “Identity Theft is Not a Joke, Jim!

  1. Hey Ashley,
    I feel like I have posted a similar amount of things to my social media, and I even use mine for a multi-level-marketing company I use as a side gig (not since my internship bc that was a lot and I could barely wash my dishes, let alone post/have convos and sell things). The way I use social media is to doom scroll and then repost things to my story or page… but I have also found by taking this course, that having a thorough and relevant digital footprint is something I should definitely be more mindful of for future employment needs, if nothing else.
    I like the idea of putting together a list of ways to build our digital footprint! Maybe paying attention to that would make me avoid activities like weekly blog posts less…. maybe….

  2. Hi Ashley,
    I also found that it was neat to see what all showed up when I googled myself. I ended u getting more results when I searched my name with my home city. There were a few hits that came up about extracurricular activities I had participated in that I did not know were posted online! Thanks for the post!

  3. Hi Ashley,
    WOW that is a lot of hits! Although its not a bad thing to have a popular name. Its going to make you seemingly already small digital foot print even smaller!
    Thanks for sharing,

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