cyber; cyberbulling; bullying; bullies; bully; harassment; mobile; phones; cell; internet; web; sites; email; predators; social; network;
Cyberbullying involves using technology, social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, phone messaging or the internet to tease, harass or embarrass someone. Cyberbullying can be extremely harmful, and victims may feel unsafe, become depressed and even seek to harm themselves.
What you can do
If you are still at school, report the cyberbullying to your teachers and tell your parents or caregivers. Bullies rely on their victims not speaking up.
Find out how to report bullying and harassment on each of the different social networks that you use. If you can't find someone to talk to about how you are feeling you can ring Kids Helpline - telephone 1800 55 1800 if you live in Australia http://www.kidshelp.com.au.
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If you know someone who is being cyberbullied help them to get help. The website 'Bullying no way' could be helpful http://www.bullyingnoway.com.au/
How to keep yourself safe
If you want to join a social network like Facebook:
- Keep your personal details private. Upgrade your security settings.
- Don't give your password out to others.
- Only allow people who are your real friends onto your friends list.
- Don't post anything which could be used to embarrass you.
- Don't do anything or say anything online that you wouldn't normally do or say.
- Protect your friends' privacy by not posting anything about them without their permission. Ask them to protect your privacy too.
- Be mindful of who you give your personal email address to.
- Ask friends not to circulate your personal emails and/or email address to people you don't know.
- If you don't know the sender of an email, then don't open it.
- If you are receiving emails from people you don't want to, block their messages.
- Only give your phone number out to friends. Ask friends not to pass on your number to others without checking with you first.
- If you experience cyberbullying through your phone don't respond. Bullies like to see what effect they are having and may stop if they don't get a response.
- Keep any insulting or threatening sms by saving them on your phone with the time and date. It is against the law to use a mobile phone to harass or threaten someone.
- If bullying continues turn off your phone and report it to your network provider. They may suggest you change your number, which would give you the chance to check all your contacts and start again with a list of close friends and family.
If you live in Australia you can call the Kid's Helpline 1800 55 1800.
The information on this site should not be used as an alternative to professional care. If you have a particular problem, see a doctor, or ring the Youth Healthline on 1300 13 17 19 (local call cost from anywhere in South Australia).