Ways to Counter Cyberbullying and Harassment
Cyberbullying is one of the greatest threats and issues which people of all ages face in their daily lives. The advent of technology and rising modes of communication has made the world more accessible and its citizens more approachable. However, this platform is misused by trolls and bullies to make others" lives miserable by hurling mean comments, threatening to leak private information online, online harassment, hacking one"s personal account etc.
It has been observed that the majority of victims of cyberbullying are youngsters. With the rising dependency on technology and every individual"s presence on social media, many fall prey to cyberbullying on social media as well.
Cyberbullying, however, can be effectively dealt with at a grassroots level. In recent times, many are standing up against cyberbullying. So Here are some tips on how to prevent cyberbullying.
In the online space, your data is more vulnerable and accessible by a third party. With the rise in influencer culture, many users prefer to keep their profiles visible to the public so that their content can reach and engage the masses but there is a risk to it. Unless your accessibility is meant for collaborations or job prospects, keep your profiles private. Ensure your posts and updates are accessible only to those whom you trust.
Ensure you use a strong password to protect your private and personal data from your peers. This will help in keeping the bullies away from your posts and avoid leaking sensitive information to others.
Refrain from Responding:
You respond you lose. Most bullies are only looking for attention and they want you to respond. Do not give in to their provocations, simply delete their comments or best abstain from responding. Some platforms allow you to restrict or mute such profiles who tend to harass or bully you.
Report or Block Option:
Various social media platforms provide you with an option to report or block the profile that has been disturbing your peace. Utilise these options well and also reach out to your peers to help you in reporting these cases of cyberbullying.
Even though there are laws against cyberbullying, yet it persists. The reason is none other than the silence of the victims who are hesitant to speak up. The punishment for cyberbullying or cyber harassment ranges from a hefty penalty to a jail term depending on the seriousness of the crime. Post screenshots and make your circle aware of these incidents as they will collectively help you in reporting the said profile. Also, you can submit this evidence of cyberbullying to the cyber crime department which will take the necessary steps to track down the profile.
Take a break:
Experiencing cyberbullying or cyber harassment can be traumatic and can induce unwarranted stress. After dealing with such an ordeal, it is advisable to take a break from online portals for a time being. Take up any activity that will help you take your mind off the incident. It can be as simple as going for a walk, catching up with your friends, going to a movie, composing music, painting, etc. Also, ensure you talk to your close circle or family who will help you overcome the stress and trauma of cyberbullying.
Keep yourself informed:
Understand cyberbullying and why it takes place. This will help you in tackling future cases with ease. Keep yourself informed about the laws and procedures for reporting a cyberbullying case. Also, to make things easy, understand what kind of profiles are attacking you. Based on the information on the said profile, you can file a legitimate complaint to the concerned authorities or have the account blocked. Many online bullies tend to attack through fake profiles, and in such cases, it"s best to block and ignore rather than engage.
While cyberbullying cases have been on the rise in the recent decade due to the rise of social media and technology, however, there"s a silver lining to this situation. Reporting cyberbullying cases has become much easier than before. You can report cases at cybercrime.gov.in where you can track your complaint and also conceal your identity to protect yourself from external threats. The problems will persist unless we learn to take them to the task and tackle them as we should. Remember, all problems in the world have a solution, learn to utilise them for your welfare.