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Staying Safe Online

A series of assemblies are taking place to ensure students are fully aware of the impact of social media sites.

E-Safety officer Caroline Moore is giving a talk to each house to explain to students how their posts on sites like Facebook and Twitter could affect their chances of getting into college and university. She also explores the issue of cyber bullying and the far-reaching consequences.

On Tuesday, Ms Moore spoke to Sanger house and she reminded students that social media sites own everything that is posted onto an account. Even if something is deleted, it never truly disappears because Facebook keeps a copy.

Ms Moore gave an example of a family who posted a holiday photo on Facebook, which later ended up on a billboard in Florida. Despite the privacy settings put on the photo, Facebook were within their rights to share and sell the image.

Speaking to Sanger house, Ms Moore said: "Around 75% of UK universities and colleges will now Facebook and Google you even before you've had an interview. "The new timeline profile makes it even easier for them to look back on your past postings. Nothing is ever private on these sites."

Ms Moore gave an example of a 16-year-old boy who worked for a well-known cinema chain. He joined the cinema group on Facebook but was later fined £50,000 for reputational damage after leaving posts about what he had got up to at work.

Ms Moore said: "You can get into huge amounts of trouble through posts and comments on Facebook. It might not be today, tomorrow or next week, but at some point, someone who you don't want to see what you are doing will see what you're up to on Facebook.

"Your privacy settings change constantly so even if you share something with your group of friends, all it takes is someone to tag you in something or share it and your whole class could see it."

Ms Moore's visit was organised by KSA's anti-bullying group, as part of its application for the silver award in Northamptonshire's Accreditation Award Scheme.