Continuing our blog series targeted at protecting yourself against cyber threats, today's blog topic covers Cyber Bullying.
Today's guest blog contributor is Eric Varela. Eric is a student here at CSU Channel Islands majoring in Information Technology with a minor in Security Systems Engineering.
- Denigrating: Putting someone down by posting or sending cruel and embarrassing material (text, photos, etc.) about the individual to others.
- Flaming & Trolling: Posting angry, rude or mean-spirited comments and provoking others to do the same.
- Harassing: Sending repeated, unwanted messages to another person.
- Outing: Posting or sending out private information about someone without that person’s permission and with the intent of embarrassing or harming that person.
- Excluding: Leaving someone out of an online group for malicious reasons.
- Masquerading: Sending or posting messages, or creating Facebook, Twitter, or other social media profiles as someone else in attempt to damage the victim’s reputation or relationships.
- Mobbing: Recruiting friends and allies to send hundreds of text messages to the victim’s cell phone or mobile device.
- Stalking: Threatening harm or intimidating someone else by constantly monitoring their actions and locations. Stalking is a serious issue. Thousands of college students are stalked every year.
- Decide whether to respond: If you know the person, respond to the first message, telling them to stop. If the first message is anonymous, don’t respond. Don’t respond to any additional messages and block or delete/unfriend/unfollow the person.
- Document. Document. Document: Take screen shots. Save all communications for evidence. Do not alter them in any way. Keep electronic copies, not just print-outs. Having forms of proof such as the actual text messages, emails, and voicemail makes it easier to build a case for harassment and pursue charges.
- Report It: Report abusive posts or messages to the service provider—Facebook, Twitter, the harassers’ cell phone provider, or their internet service provider. You can also report the abuse to your Residential Advisor.
- Refuse to pass on the harasser’s messages.
- Tell Friends to stop the harassment or bullying.
- Offer the victim support without blame.
- Report abusive posts to the proper authorities.
- Block communication with those who are posting or sending abusive messages.