Cyberbullying cases have been on the rise over the past few years. According to a Pew Research Center study in 2007, 32% of teens have experienced some form of cyberbullying. About a decade later, in 2016, the National Crime Prevention Council revealed that the number had risen by a whole 11%. A 2017 study on online harassment by Pew Research Center noted that about 62% of Americans now consider cyberbullying to be a significant issue in the society.
Going by the numbers, it is essential for parents to be vigilant in ensuring that their children aren’t victims of the online bullying. This is especially true because many kids are exposed to technology at earlier ages, and spend more time connected to the internet, thanks to the availability of unlimited Wi-Fi and devices like laptops, tablets, and smartphones.
That said, how do you protect your child from cyberbullying?
While protecting your child from cyberbullying might seem like an easy thing to do, it often isn’t considering you might never know that they are victims. You’ll be shocked to find out that 90% of the victims never say a word regarding the abuse to their parents, or any adult for that matter. This is even more disturbing, especially when you look at recent headlines of the potential impacts of cyberbullying.
Luckily, there are things you can do to protect your little one; here are some of them:
Control your Wi-Fi networks
You don’t have to be tech-savvy to control your Wi-Fi networks. Today, there are numerous applications that you can install in your gadgets and have them do all the work for you. However, since these applications are not created equal, you’ll need to do some digging to find out which one works for you. High-end applications allow you to identify the most visited place, look through the list of Wi-Fi networks, monitor all visited Wi-Fi hotspots, avoid suspicious hotspot connection and even view full connection details (including type, duration, name and time). If this seems like something you want to use to protect your child, you may want to explore the topic further through the mSpy blog.
Advise them about friends
Remind them that they should only be friends with people that they know in reality. In addition to that, they should avoid being online friends with any person that has bullied them before – whether it’s at school or home because often, they will bully them online too.
Less information is better
We live in a world where information opens up a lot of doors. Advise your child not to disclose too much about themselves to the public (apart from their names, birth month and state of residence). Often, this is enough for friends to find and connect with them, but not enough to jeopardize their security to child predators and identify thefts.
Teach them to “unfriend”
There are times when your child is friends with someone but falls out of friendship with them after being bullied. Tell them that it’s all right to unfriend and even delete friends who have bullying tendencies from their list of friends. You can also teach them how to delete slanderous comments about them from their page.