Staying safe online

A guide for students to staying safe online, and how to respond to online bullying.

Online bullying

Online bullying – or cyberbullying – means using technology like the internet or mobile devices to bully someone. It might include:

  • sending abusive texts and emails
  • posting unkind messages or images
  • imitating others online
  • excluding others online
  • tagging people in pictures against their wishes
  • threatening another person to do something such as sending revealing images.

What should I do if I’m bullied online?

  • Stay calm.
  • Don’t respond when you're angry or upset.
  • Tell someone: a parent or carer, relative, adult friend, teacher or the school’s counsellor or psychologist. Ask for advice.
  • If you want to talk to someone other than your school or your family you can contact Kids Helpline. You can call them for free on 1800 55 1800.

How do I report it?

  • Keep records of calls or messages that are offensive or hurtful.
  • Report serious online bullying to the Office of the eSafety Commissioner
  • Call the police if you are physically threatened.

How can I protect myself on the phone?

To stay safe, remember to:

  • only give your phone number to people you know and trust
  • keep your phone away from people who shouldn't have your number
  • use caller ID blocking to hide your number when you call others
  • consider whether your messages or calls are appropriate
  • always check the privacy settings on your phone.

How can I protect myself on social media?

To stay safe, remember to:

  • regularly check and re-set the privacy settings on your social network profiles
  • only share your personal information with people you know and trust
  • be careful when posting images – they could be shared in public places
  • never share your passwords with anyone.
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