Cyber bullying is when people use technology and the internet to bully other people. Cyber bullying can happen day and night, in the week and at weekends. The internet means that what bullies say and do can be seen by a lot of people really quickly, and other people can join in.
Any form of bullying is never OK. If you’re being bullied you don’t have to go through it alone. There are people who can help you.
If you’re being bullied online or offline it’s important to tell an adult you trust. This might be someone at home or at your school. If you don’t think you’re ready to do that you can call Childline on 0800 11 11.
You can also contact Checkpoint who are based in Torquay but are a service for young people living in any part of Torbay. If you're aged between 8 and 17 you can call them on 01803 290330 for free and confidential information, advice and support.
Just like offline there are laws that apply online so someone should not be surprised to receive a visit from the police if their actions have broken the law.
Devon and Cornwall Police take bullying (including cyber bullying) very seriously. As well as catching the bad guys the police are there to protect young people.
If someone is threatening to hurt you, making you afraid for your safety, or upsetting you so much that you are thinking about hurting yourself they could very well be breaking the law.
If you feel in danger phone 999 and speak to Devon and Cornwall Police. Remember that this is an emergency telephone number. If you want to speak to the police but it’s not an emergency you can telephone 101. You can also ask an adult you trust to phone the police for you.
Many social networks allow users to ‘report abuse’ and ‘block’ other people. As well as doing this it’s important to tell an adult you trust to make sure that you get the support you need. Even if you can deal with the situation on your own, sometimes it can just help you feel better by offloading to someone else.
If you’re using a social network it’s a good idea to find out how you can report abuse and block people. Here are just a few social networks with links to their reporting information.
If you’re using a gaming platform, again it’s a good idea to find out how you can report bullying and abuse. Here are just two.