31 August 2011 – iiNet, Australia’s second largest DSL broadband provider, has released a guide for parents on how to recognise and deal with online bullying in the latest instalment of its Online Safety Series.
Rebecca Moonen, iiNet’s Compliance Manager, said that the growing use of smart phones among children has caused a rise the incidence of cyber bullying.
“It’s becoming normal for kids to get online to socialise, even when they are on the move, and as a result typical school yard bullying has crossed over to social media sites and mobile phones. It’s often more vicious as taunts and photographs are easily shared amongst peers in real time,” Ms Moonen said.
“The iiNet Online Safety Series fact sheet is designed to point parents in the right direction so they know how to deter and manage online behaviour that’s not so nice.”
- Draw a line and know when it’s been crossed – don’t respond to a bully as if they’re ignored they will often lose interest. Avoid forwarding messages or pictures that may upset others as forwarding malicious material means you’ll be part of the problem, not the solution.
- Know the signs – bullying victims will often keep quiet. Telltale signs include sudden computer shutdowns when you walk into the room and withdrawn or moody behaviour such as mood swings, anxiety and sleeping troubles.
- Talk and take note – encourage everyone in your family to talk and share if they run into any issues. If an incident gets out of hand, print out all evidence of bullying, block and remove any bullies from social networking sites and report the issue to your child’s school.
- Enjoy time offline – switch off mobile phones and laptop computers at night time and leave them on the kitchen bench.
iiNet’s Online Safety Series is designed to help Australians become more aware of safe practices when surfing the web. Each month, information will be released and made available for download from the iiNet website. Topics covered by the safety series include social networking, online shopping, phishing emails and password security.
To download this month’s complete factsheet, learn more about iiNet’s Online Safety Series or to register interest in an Online Safety Seminar visit www.iinet.net.au/safety.
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