The National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) has an excellent Cyberbullying area on their website with good information and support suggestions.
As part of their campaign, they have also added Cyberbullying Banners that you can embed onto your web page if you have one. These are excellent banners and you can see and download the code for them by clicking here.
Unfortunately WordPress does not allow me to add them onto a WordPress site, so I can’t show you them here, but they are excellent and I recommend that you check them out.
NCPC suggests the following tips on their website to help you deal with Cyberbullying issues:
What Kids Need to Know:
- Never give out personal information online, whether in instant message profiles, chat rooms, blogs, or personal websites.
- Never tell anyone but your parents your password, even friends.
- If someone sends a mean or threatening message, don’t respond. Save it or print it out and show it to an adult.
- Never open emails from someone you don’t know or from someone you know is a bully.
- Don’t put anything online that you wouldn’t want your classmates to see, even in email.
- Don’t send messages when you’re angry. Before clicking “send,” ask yourself how you would feel if received the message.
- Help kids who are bullied online by not joining in and showing bullying messages to an adult.
- Always be as polite online as you are in person.
- Since most cyberbullying takes place at home, it’s important that parents know about cyberbullying and that they get involved in preventing it. Just like parents help their kids avoid inappropriate websites, they can protect them from cyberbullying.
What Parents Can Do
- Keep your home computer in a busy area of your house.
- Set up email and chat accounts with your children. Make sure that you know their screen names and passwords and that they don’t include any personal information in their online profiles.
- Regularly go over their instant messenger “buddy list” with them. Ask who each person is and how your children know him or her.
- Print this list of commonly used acronyms in instant messenger and chat rooms from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and post it by your computer.
- Discuss cyberbullying with your children and ask if they have ever experienced it or seen it happen to someone.
- Tell your children that you won’t blame them if they are cyberbullied. Emphasize that you won’t take away their computer privileges – this is the main reason kids don’t tell adults when they are cyberbullied.
Given the expansion of the Social Networking communities on the web, it’s important that teens and parents remember that information put on there is available to the world. While I know many of us wish there weren’t “bad” people out there, we know that they are out there and need to remember to protect our identities and ourselves from harm. The above tips are an excellent way to start to protect yourself from cyberbullies and cyber-criminals.