Macksville High students learn about their digital thumbprint

GHOST MODE USERS: Bella Douglas, Alison Flack, Kalahni Gray, Ellie Stapleton, Grace Hill, Courtney Clark, Dimity O'Connor, Ella Bradford
GHOST MODE USERS: Bella Douglas, Alison Flack, Kalahni Gray, Ellie Stapleton, Grace Hill, Courtney Clark, Dimity O'Connor, Ella Bradford

Do you know what 'ghost mode' is and why you might need to use it?

Year 7 students at Macksville High were recently introduced to this very useful setting that allows you to hide your location from any potential stalkers.

They learnt about it while attending an Optus Digital Thumbprint workshop designed to teach young people how to be safe, responsible and positive online.

Workshop facilitator, Kristina Binks, covered a range of topics, including understanding your social media footprint, password security, safeguarding your online identity and cyberbullying.

When the Guardian News spoke to students afterwards, they all agreed it had been very useful and making them realise how easy it was for information to be shared without you knowing it.

"We also learnt how to check how secure our passwords are - there is a website and also an app that works like a safe to store all your passwords," Grace Hill said.

Numbers, capitals and symbols are all encouraged to help increase security.

Chillingly quite a few had stories of being stalked online.

"One 35-year-old man requested to follow me and send him nude pictures," Courtney Clark said.

"I blocked him and told my parents."

Alison Flack said someone had hacked into her friend's SnapChat account and started sending creepy texts and videos ... the hacker was blocked and reported.

And in Ella Bradford's case it was found the follower had been stalking her friends as well as other young women around the country. He was reported.

The most popular social media sites with this group were Instagram, SnapChat and TikTok.

And did you know the average person has 96 passwords these days!

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