Staying safe in the online world

In our last synchronous class session, we spend a lot of time discussing Internet Privacy. With increased use of social networking sites and web 2.0 tools, we are sharing more of ourselves online everyday. How can we protect ourselves from having our identity stolen or accounts hacked?

Some of the things brought up from the discussion are:

  1. Minimize sharing personal information on social networking sites.
    • Be sure to review privacy settings on your Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and LinkedIn accounts. How much do you want people to know about you?
  2. Make sure to use “https” for a more secured web interactions (i.e., online banking or even to check e-mail)
    • Along the same line, do not use a public WiFi hotspot for sensitive transactions.
  3. Consider using a password management system like LastPass, KeePass, or 1Password.
    • Here’s a review of several tools by LifeHacker
  4. If you are Google user, use a 2-step verification method to protect your account.

These were all great tips. I have been practicing most of these already. I have been an avid user of LastPass and Google’s 2-step verification method for a while. They were fairly easy to set up and so far so good.

However, in the past I tend to share a lot about myself on Facebook since it’s the easiest way I keep in touch with family and friends around the country and the world. I now try to limit how much info I post online.

One thing we didn’t touch on in class is also the importance of educating our students about Internet Privacy. I know that I can do a better job about it with my students. It should be an ongoing conversation that I introduce at the beginning of the course (when they first log into the course LMS) and continue throughout the year.


For the first week of ETEC 647e, we were asked to compile a short video/slideshow to introduce ourselves to the class. It’s a great assignment since it really made me think about characteristics about myself I would like to share with others.

Immediately I wanted to showcase the different places I’ve travelled to. Luckily, my husband and I have been pretty organized with our digital photo collection using Picasa. We’ve also had all of our photos from film scanned by a few years ago, so all of our photos are now on our desktop and backed up on a hard drive. Additionally, we subscribe to Back

I had some challenges narrowing down the thousands of pictures since I’ve visited 17 countries, 7 United States National Parks, and 24 states. So I decided to highlight some of my favorite places that I’ve been to with pictures of my family.

I made the slideshow using It was fairly easy to use. I like that there are many options to choose your images from (Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, Picasa), so if you already have your photos on the cloud using these services, it’s easy to find them. After picking the photos, it’s a matter of uploading an .mp3 or finding song in their list for the audio. There were also many options on how to present the slideshow with their unique set of “skins”. I was able to make my video within 10 minutes from start to finish – which is super fast by my standards. I’m used to making my slideshows on iMovie and it can take a long time to render, export, etc. Below is my finished Slideshow.

My Travel slideshow

Additionally, this assignment allowed me to get to know new classmates (especially those I have not had classes with before). It’s neat to see how others decide to present themselves and how they went about doing it. I also learn of new web 2.0 tools to try out, such as and Popcorn Maker. These were among the many tools listed on that Dr. Bert shared with us for the assignment.

I’m looking forward to learning more about Emerging Technology through this course and from my peers.