It’s common knowledge that every time you visit a website, your behaviour and preferences are being tracked. This is so that the next time you visit the website, or those that the service advertises on, you only see the items you like. Alternatively, while you’re browsing another website, that same item that you clicked earlier on the online shopping website, is now advertised on the website you’re currently viewing.

Then there are your social media activities, the adverts you click on (sometimes by accident), and your website history. Every action that you take online is monitored one way or another, which is why it is important that you’re always aware of what you’re doing when connected to the internet.

Being a good digital citizen

Let’s say you see an article online that only focuses on one side of a story instead of providing a balanced view. You click the Read more option and come across similar articles where only one point of view is being promoted. This could be a form of fake news. While these articles may be of interest to you, a good digital citizen wouldn’t share them with contacts unless they’re positive that this is something that others would want to know more about.

In another example, imagine that one of your colleagues does something that infuriates you. It would be tempting to immediately go online to name and shame them on social media. Only later on, when you’ve taken many deep breaths and calmed down, would you realise the error of your ways and try to retract your statements.

However, once you post something, it is online forever even if you delete the post. Perhaps your contacts have taken a screenshot of the post and shared it with their contacts. There is no way to control who sees what.

So, to protect your reputation, be wary about what you share or post on social media.