Cyberbullying, or online bullying, can be defined as using the internet or technologies to deliberately and repeatedly upset someone else; it is often an extension of face-to-face bullying, where the internet provides an additional route to communicate and harass.
Cyberbullying can/ may involve:
- Defamation, taunting and humiliation
- Exclusion or peer-rejection
- Harassment and cyberstalking
- Impersonation, identity theft or hacking
- Intimidation or threats of violence
- Manipulation and exploitation
- Publication of private or personal information and images.
Section 89 of the Education and Inspections Act 2006 states that every school must have measures in place to prevent all forms of bullying amongst pupils, including cyberbullying. The Department for Education provide non-statutory guidance for schools; 'Preventing and Tackling Bullying' which includes advice and information about how schools can support pupils and staff, as well as information to share with parents/carers.
If staff are concerned that a child or young person is being bullied online, they should follow the school or setting’s existing anti-bullying policy and procedures. School leaders should also access Childnet’s ‘Cyberbullying Understand, Prevent and Respond’ guidance.