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Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.
Examples of cyberbullying include mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites, and embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles.
Being a victim of cyberbullying can be a common and painful experience. Some youth who cyberbully:
Contrary to what cyberbullies may believe, cyberbullying is a big deal, and can cause a variety of reactions in teens. Some teens have reacted in positive ways to try to prevent cyberbullying by:
Many youth experience a variety of emotions when they are cyberbullied. Youth who are cyberbullied report feeling angry, hurt, embarrassed, or scared. These emotions can cause victims to react in ways such as
Some teens feel threatened because they may not know who is cyberbullying them. Although cyberbullies may think they are anonymous, they can be found. If you are cyberbullied or harassed and need help, save all communication with the cyberbully and talk to a parent, teacher, law enforcement officer, or other adult you trust.
Teens have figured out ways to prevent cyberbullying. Follow in the footsteps of other quick-thinking teens and:
You can also help prevent cyberbullying by:
Don’t forget that even though you can’t see a cyberbully or the bully’s victim, cyberbullying causes real problems. If you wouldn’t say it in person, don’t say it online.
END cyberbullying: Don’t write it. Don’t forward it.
What Else Can I Do To Stay Cyber-safe?
Remember that the Internet is accessed by millions of people all over the world, not just your friends and family. While many Internet users are friendly, some may want to hurt you. Below are some ways to stay cyber-safe:
Please use a computer at a safe location because your computer use may be monitored. If you are in danger, please contact 911. Click here for ways to manage your personal information online, as well as tips for following safe browsing procedures.In the event that you need to exit this site quickly, click on the "Escape" button on the top right corner of the navigation bar.
Tips for Using Technology: It is not possible to delete all the “footprints” of your computer or online activities. If you are being monitored, it may be unsafe to change your computer behaviors, like suddenly deleting your Internet history if that is not your regular habit.
If you think you may be monitored on your home computer, be careful how you use your computer since an abuser might become suspicious. You may want to keep using the monitored computer for activities, like looking up the weather or reading the news. Use a safer computer, such as a public computer at your local library, to research escape plans, look for new jobs or apartments, bus tickets, or ask for help.
Email and Instant/Text Messaging are not safe or confidential ways to talk to someone about the danger or abuse in your life. If possible, please call a hotline instead. If you use email or IM, please use a safer computer and an account your abuser does not know about.