How to Delete Your Digital Footprint — 8 Ways to Protect Your Identity Online

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Everything that is done on the Internet will leave a digital footprint. Whenever you visit a website or share something on a social media site, your computer exchanges data with the server, even when someone tags you to a post. This footprint is your digital data, which includes basic information such as IP address and email address, as well as other personal information, such as your gender, date of birth, or educational level. All of these resources are collected and used by marketers to position you as a consumer or hacker and scammer. A reason for you to know how to delete your digital footprint when the need arises. 

To be sure of your footprint is an opportunity and not a bad thing that compromises your identity, you need to know what your digital footprint means to you.

Here’s how to get started with reputation management and how to delete your digital footprint.

1. Check your digital footprint 

Enter your name and search for it on a major search engine. Also, check using common misspellings. Make sure to search for pictures, sounds, and documents. Websites can be indexed by search engines like Google, so the content you remove will show up in search queries for some time before it falls further in the rankings. It can never go away completely, but it is one way on how to delete your digital footprint.

2. Social media can be dangerous

Social networking sites are the “root” of your online footprint. It is a platform that requires information to work and encourages users to add information about themselves by becoming part of groups and subscribing to pages. Although your internet activity is about jokes and family images, protecting your data and online security is an important part of protecting your identity online. 

Perhaps you commented or posted a post on a website a long time ago, or supported someone who has since developed a negative image. You might even have gotten into debate, argument, or posted photos when everyone was more naive about the power of the internet. You are unlikely to be able to find and delete everything, especially if you’ve been online for a while. However, if you can find everything, it’s a huge part of how to delete your digital footprint. 

3. Be sensible about content that makes you look bad 

There are several steps you will need to take depending on whether or not you are the one who posted the material first. It’s easier if, after spending time reading what you’ve written, even posts that are not under your current username, question its suitability in the context of current attitudes. You won’t have to delete everything.

If someone else uploads the material, asking others to remove the negative content, even if it is directly related to you, is much more complicated. Many websites have content removal policies, and it’s a part of how to delete your digital footprint.

4. Be careful about what you upload 

Rather than looking for how to delete your digital footprint, I recommend that you take steps to keep your digital footprint clean. Think long before you join an online discussion, even with family and friends.  When replying to a comment, ask yourself if you want to permanently attach the comment to your digital profile. Internet policing starts with the users. Thinking carefully is the best way to keep your footprints clean and well-received.

It is a good idea to extend this policy to your family. Internet security is an integral part of the curriculum these days, but children who use the Internet with increasing independence need to know how to apply what they have learned in school in real life. Explain how much better it is to keep a good name on the internet from the beginning than learning how to delete your digital footprint when you apply to college or your first job.

5. Do not allow tagging 

It doesn’t matter how careful you are with what you say on the Internet, you can’t dictate what others write. Users can post without your consent or knowledge. It takes a boring shot and you might be trending as a meme.

6. Guard your image 

If that person is a friend, that’s fine.  Deleting comments and photos shouldn’t be a problem, but it can be complicated.  Cyberbullying, former intimate partners, and even cybercriminals threaten to search for embarrassing pictures of people and post them online. They do this while having fun collecting contact lists. This is a horror story, but it happens if you’re not using privacy settings or if you’re wondering who you’re accepting as friends. The only real way to prevent it learning how to delete your digital footprint. 

On Facebook: The “Settings Timeline Review” button helps you access all the data you’ve been tagged, even from non-friends. Just select “Enabled” in the “Review Posts Tagged” section or follow the instructions in the Facebook Help Center to accept or remove tags.

On Twitter: Go to “Configuration and Privacy”. From there, select the option, “Privacy and Safety.” Next, hit the “Photo Tagging” and change to ”Identified by individuals”.

On Instagram: Head to your profile and click on the tag button. Then click on the picture you want to erase from the title. This will highlight your username. To get a notification when someone tags you, go to “Settings” and then “Privacy”. From there, choose “Tags” and click “Attach Automatically” to “Delete Me from Mail” to “On”.

If you are tagged in a comment, you can either ask the person who tagged you to delete it (tap their username and click ‘Message’), or you can block this user from tagging you in the future by tapping their profile on the three dots menu and selecting “Block”.

7. Set your privacy settings strictly 

Many applications automatically transfer data to third parties.  To limit exposure, check the security settings of any application that uses all Internet devices, including TVs.

Learn how to delete your digital footprint with your social media privacy settings to limit who can access your page and who sees your posts. Generally, your digital footprint is smaller and less of a target when there are just a few people getting your posts.

Instagram: Go to “Settings” and then choose “Privacy” and “Account Privacy” to ensure your account becomes private.

Twitter: Go to “Settings and Privacy”. Once there, click on the “Privacy and Security” tab.

Pinterest: Pinterest lets you make boards private, even though you can’t make your account private without deactivating it.

Snapchat: To ensure who can see you on Snapchat, you will play with settings again. You can find some highly effective guidelines to keep your Snapchat posts private on the support page.

Facebook: Go to the “Security” tab and change all settings to prevent people from accessing your profile, calling you, or seeing what you are sharing. Make sure “Free” is set to nothing.

8. Set a good profile online 

After making the decision to learn how to delete your digital footprint, the next step is to present yourself the way you want to be seen, creating new and more relevant content. The most recent content will hit search results and lower the ranking of previous posts to pages that most users never click on.

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. How long does your digital footprint last? 

Your digital footprint is permanent. This means that there is a permanent record of each of your online actions—positive or negative, intentional or unintentional.

2. What is the impact of having a negative digital footprint? 

The digital footprints you leave can affect all aspects of your life, which can lead to loss of employment or job opportunities, the sharing of personal information, the breakdown of relationships, and even being implicated in crime.

3. Is it possible to avoid leaving a digital footprint? 

It is possible to avoid leaving a digital footprint as your digital footprint grows over time. And everyone must keep track of their digital footprint. Setting privacy settings at the highest level will ensure your privacy.


I know that keeping up with reputation management can be difficult, but it is better to exercise caution than to regret it.  Not only can the World Wide Web be a horrible place at times, but the guys on top don’t care about tidying things up. Right now, you need to investigate yourself and ensure your safety and that means you need to learn how to delete your digital footprint.