Last updated on June 19, 2023

What is Cyberbullying?

Bullying with the use of digital technologies is known as cyberbullying. This may take place over digital devices like mobile phones, computers and tablets through messaging apps, social media, forums and gaming platforms. Cyberbullying consists of sending, posting or sharing negative, harmful, inappropriate, false or harsh content about someone else. This may affect all types of children in all classes of society.

Some examples of Cyberbullying:

★ Sharing photos / videos or private information of someone else causing embarrassment.
★ Sending threatening e-mails, negative messages, pornographic or other offensive content directly to the victim.
★ Impersonating (pretending to be) the victim online to create a wrong impression about her / him.
★ Spreading rumors on social media to arouse others’ anger towards the victim or harassing during live chats.

What are the effects of cyberbullying?

Effects of cyberbullying can last a long time and impact on someone in many ways.

★ Mentally – Feeling upset, embarrassed, scared, nervous, insecure, guilty, stupid or angry
★ Emotionally – Thinking about the embarrassment all the time or losing interest in things you like / love
★ Physically – Exhausted (due to loss of sleep), headaches, stomachaches or other discomforts

In extreme cases, this can even lead children to commit suicide.

Who should you talk to if you’re being bullied online?

★ Parents
★ A close family member or a trusted adult
★ In school – your favorite teacher or counsellor
★ A professional counsellor through a trusted helpline

According to UNICEF it is essential to identify and report cyberbullying incidents in order to stop them happening again. Most of the social media platforms encourage you to report such posts through the apps themselves to ensure the safety of their users. It is also advised to contact the local police or emergency services if you are in immediate danger.

See more cyber related information for teens.