25-Oct-2010 17:00

Cyber Bullying - Have you ever suffered?

Technology has opened up a new world of possibilities but, by definition, it can also create many problems.

We are aware that with the enormously increased levels of online Social Media, mobiles and fixed-line communications, cyber harassment is on the increase..

The abuse can take place in many areas:
Nasty or threatening text messages and emails
The malicious posting of humiliating videos or pictures online
Abusive messages posted online on social networking sites or chat rooms
Setting up 'hate groups' on social networking sites
or even pure Identity fraud - be it online socially or professionally

Although also difficult, in the slightly more matured market of fixed-line telecoms that my company SimplyFone is a long-established provider, there are steps and procedures already in place to help, counteract and prevent continuing abuse (anyone suffering these problems is welcome to contact me personally for assistance)

However, Cyber bullying is a problem partly due to the very real fact that it is relatively simple for the bully to remain pretty anonymous.

So what can be done?

Firstly it should be said, that abuse of this kind must never be ignored and certainly even more so if (your) children are complaining about any type of online bullying (it may be pertinent to actually 'ask' your kids if they've ever suffered …)

If you are unfortunate enough to be the target of cyber bullying, online or via a mobile phone, it is important to report it as soon as possible to your service provider - mobile or ISP.

The temptation may be to respond - this is a mistake as the perpetrator WANTS a response!
Ignore the online messages and try to block them (often easier said than done)

Keep every bullying message, save all their posts or pictures.

Make a note of times and dates and as much information as you can get about their sender ID
If possible, (and often a last resort as your numbers and IDs, nicknames & profiles are so important to you), try to change all usernames and passwords & amend, even if ever so slightly, your online name..

Finally, as a good check why not Google yourself or your company or website or Facebook page every so often or set up Google alerts & if you're unhappy with what you find - make changes.

We can't stop bullying, in any areas of our lives - online, telecoms, socially & in business, but at least we can do our level bests to act judiciously to prevent it!

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