Tips to Identify, Deal With and Prevent Cyber Bullying

Cyber bullying is a serious problem for many young people these days. Bullying is not just limited to the playground any more. Now bullies have the ability to target your child on their cell phone, home and school computers and on any other Internet capable device that they may have. A cyber bully is particularly dangerous because of the stretch of their influence. With the Internet, an embarrassing or hurtful message can be sent and forwarded to a huge number of people in a matter of seconds. Additionally, anyone who wishes can easily send a bullying message without disclosing their own identity. This is especially dangerous because people are much more likely to do things that they know are wrong if they believe that there is no way that they will be caught.

You need to be armed with the tools to fight cyber bullying. Whether you are a teen receiving the abuse or a parent who wants to make sure that their child does not become the target, below are some tips that you need to know in order to identify, deal with, and prevent cyber bullying.

Identify cyber bullying

• Approximately 10% of youth who use the Internet say they were harassed at least one time online in the last year.
• Gender doesn’t seem to be a determining factor of who is bullied online, but older teens may be more likely to be victims (or offenders) of cyber bullying than younger teens.
• A recent national survey suggests that the average age of teens who report being bullied online is about 15 years old.
• It appears that teens who are bullied online may also be victims of other types of bullying. The social problems that bring this about may or may not be related.

Deal with cyber bullying

• The majority of teens who are targets of cyber bullying are not upset by the incident. If you have been bullied online but aren’t upset, that’s normal.
• About 33% of teens who were targeted by cyber bullies say that they were afraid or at least upset by what happened. If you have been bullied on line and are upset, that’s normal too.
• Teens who said they were upset by the experience were more often targeted by an adult (someone over the age of 18). They were also younger — about 10-12 years old.

• Events that are ‘creepy’ or more aggressive, like being asked to pose for or send a picture, or even being called on the phone by the ‘bully’, were more likely to upset the victim. If you know someone who this has happened to, make sure they are OK.
• Teens who are victims of harassment may also be more likely to harass others too.

Prevent cyber bullying

• Ignore the person. There are times when the best idea is to just ignore the bully and walk away from the situation.
• Get off the Internet if you are being bothered by someone. It’s impossible for them to harass you when you aren’t there!
• If there has been a person that has been bothering you, block them out of the services you use online. Most instant messaging and e-mail systems have a favorites or buddy list. If someone is bullying you and they are on your list, just delete them. And if they aren’t on your buddy list, most services allow you to block specific e-mail addresses and messaging profiles.
• Don’t make it worse; don’t send it on to anyone else. When someone sends you a harassing message and you do the same thing back, you are just making the problem worse and contributing to the problem.
• Change your profile if needed. If someone has hacked into your profile, you should change your password so they won’t be able to again. If they keep trying to get you to add them to your buddy list again and again, it may be time to change your e-mail and username too.
• If someone created a profile of you and you didn’t know about it, you may be able to contact the service provider to have the profile removed or restricted.
• If you are upset about something that has happened or about things that have been said, talk to someone you love and trust. You don’t have to feel alone.

Cite This Page

Feldman, Barbara. "Tips to Identify, Deal With and Prevent Cyber Bullying." Surfnetkids. Feldman Publishing. 11 Jul. 2007. Web. 30 Aug. 2015. < >.

About This Page

By . Originally published July 11, 2007. Last modified July 11, 2007.

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