Keeping cyberbullies at bay

Be aware of the signs of cyberbullying and work with your child to keep them safe online.

Does your child have a smart phone or play games online?

The internet opens a world of connectivity and learning for children, but it also opens up the risk of cyberbullying.

So what is cyberbullying?

Cyberbullying is the use of technology to bully someone and to hurt them socially, psychologically, or even physically.

It can include:

 abusive texts and emails
 hurtful messages, images or videos
 imitating others online
 excluding others online
 humiliating others online
 nasty online gossip and chat.

So your child can be safe and enjoy the online world, talk to them about cyberbullying before it happens.

Be aware of the signs of cyberbullying, and together, you can work out ways to tackle cyberbullying if it happens.

What are the signs?

Signs your child is being cyberbullied can include:

 being upset after using the internet or a mobile phone
 changes in personality, becoming more withdrawn, anxious, sad or angry
 appearing more lonely or distressed
 changes in their sleep patterns
 a decline in their physical health.

If your child shows any of these signs, or other worrying and out-of-character behaviours, talk with them, keep a close eye on their online and offline behaviour, and keep them connected to your family.

More info

You can find practical hints and tips about online safety, including cyberbullying, here: Queensland Education Department’s Online awareness: Information for parents and caregivers; and the ThinkUKnow Parents’ portal.

If your child is of preschool age, the office of the eSafety Commissioner’s online resources can help keep your child safe online.

 

Published — 30 April 2019 Last updated — 30 April 2019

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