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Digital Footprint on Social Media

Digital Footprint Summary

One's unique set of traceable digital activities

Digital footprint also known as digital shadow  

Digital footprint or digital shadow refers to one's unique set of traceable digital activities, actions, contributions and communications manifested on the Internet or on digital devices. On the World Wide Web, the internet footprint; also known as cyber shadow, electronic footprint, or digital shadow, is the information left behind as a result of a user's web-browsing and stored as cookies. The term usually applies to an individual person, but can also refer to a business, organization and corporation.There are two main classifications for digital footprints: passive and active. A passive digital footprint is data collected without the owner knowing (also known as data exhaust), whereas active digital footprints are created when personal data is released deliberately by a user for the purpose of sharing information about oneself by means of websites or social media. Information may be intentionally or unintentionally left behind by the user; with it being either passively or actively collected by other interested parties. Depending on the amount of information left behind, it may be simple for other parties to gather large amounts of information on that individual using simple search engines. Tony Fish expounded upon the possible dangers of digital footprints in a 2007 self-published book. The closed loop takes data from the open loop and provides this as a new data input. This new data determines what the user has reacted to, or how they have been influenced. The feedback then builds a digital footprint based on social data, and the controller of the social digital footprint data can determine how and why people purchase and behave. Katalin Fehér emphasized in her academic research paper about personal online strategies in 2017 that users leave digital footprints behind via online systems and new media. Human interactions and digitalized automatization imply decisions and dilemmas on account of online participation. The consequences are unpredictable: both former and updated records are available in an infinite digital present.

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