A few years ago, whoopee cushions and ink on someone's chair were the thing. Now, with social networks, nasty pranks, harassment or bullying have assumed new forms and their scope is increased by the ease with which they can be shared. Moreover, anonymity and the fact that the attacker is not confronted with the victim's reaction means that these behaviours are in general more aggressive than in real life.
Often, the victims of cyberbullying do not dare to talk about it, for fear of being misunderstood.
If you experience this type of attack, talk to people you trust, preferably someone who is familiar with new technologies, or contact a specialised service directly. In more serious cases, you can complain to the police. Make sure to take with you all the evidence of harassment (screenshots, for example).
Some online platforms provide an option to report undesirable content. Use this function to get such content withdrawn. Before reporting it, though, make copies or screenshots in case you have to provide proof of the bullying, particularly if the threats are serious (threats of assault, death threats, etc.).
- If you are a victim of cyberbullying, talk to someone you trust or to a competent service. In more serious cases, a complaint can be lodged with the police.
- If someone you know is a victim of cyberbullying, take action and talk about it to people you trust (a teacher, parents, a specialised service). Do not remain indifferent, even if you are not directly involved.
- Take care about what you post on the internet. Some posts could turn round and bite you!