Maintaining online contacts has both good and bad things about it. Unfortunately, although it offers completely new ways of communicating and making our lives more convenient, it also has some unpleasant effects.
Cyberbullying is an example of something that is wreaking havoc on our youth. Online communication is used to insult or humiliate someone. It is a crime that is not only committed in the playground. With advances in technology, cyberbullying has become more common over the years.
In contrast to bullying in the traditional sense, neither physical strength nor personal encounter is required. Anyone with an internet connection and a device can become a so-called „cyberbully”. There are also no fixed times – it can happen around the clock. Since many platforms don’t bother to check if users are who they say they are, the perpetrator can choose an alias and remain anonymous.
Cyberbullying targets primarily children and adolescents, so this issue is of the utmost urgency for adults and schools. In the face of traumatic experiences, a child can be permanently mentally damaged and those experiences can scar for life. Children often have difficulty assessing how to react when they are harassed, and when they react they often do not fully understand the consequences of their actions. Cyberbullying has caused many teenagers to become depressed, withdraw and in some cases even commit suicide .
There are many different types of cyberbullying. The following terms describe the different types of cyberbullying:
Outing is an intentional act of embarrassing or publicly degrading a person by disclosing private, sensitive or embarrassing information online. Whether the information disclosed is negligible or serious, it can have a serious impact on the victim.
- Manipulation of the social media profile
The manipulation of a social media profile is a serious offense in which the perpetrator gains access to the victim’s social media account and poses as it – as a joke or in an effort to destroy his reputation . This manipulation can have serious consequences, especially because it is very difficult to delete something that has been published once and thus restore the digital reputation of the person concerned.
„Dissolve” means that nasty information about your child is shared or posted online in order to destroy their reputation or friendships with others. This includes posting private photos, videos and screenshots. The person who shares this information is usually a friend or acquaintance of the victim.
Trolling is a form of cyberbullying in which a person is insulted online in order to provoke a reaction. Usually these are personal attacks that infuriate the victim into „lashing out” and misbehaving.
In „tricking” someone can gain the child’s trust into revealing secrets or embarrassing information, which that person then publishes on the Internet so that everyone can see it. The perpetrator pretends to be a close friend and confidante and gives the child a false sense of security before he violates his trust.
One of the first things parents should do if their child is cyberbullyed is to pay attention and keep calm. Studies have shown that the majority of children do not like to tell their parents about cyberbullying because they fear that they will then no longer be allowed to use the Internet. Talk to your children about cyberbullying. Tell them that cyberbullying is common. Teach them the basics of online security and stay in touch with them digitally every day.
Another way to keep children safe online is to have a reliable security system on all of the devices they have access to. Norton Family Premier lets your kids explore the Internet freely while you stay informed about which websites they are visiting. It has tools that can block content inappropriate for children and give you insight into your child’s social media activities when they log into Facebook on their PC. The security system can also prevent your child from accidentally revealing sensitive personal information on their computer. This includes phone numbers, address, email address, and the school it attends. You will also receive a warning if your child tries to visit a blocked website. In addition, you can keep an eye on the messages it sends and receives. All of this information is available on your Android mobile device so that you can keep track of your child’s activities even when you’re on the move.
As with most problems, cyberbullying takes time to resolve. However, if you deal with it calmly, there is always a solution.