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Cyber Safety in to ask the Experts

Stop Cyber Bullying

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In the brutal world of cyber bullying, anyone can become the victim and it’s hard to figure out who the bullies are. The bullies can be good, hard-working students who rebel by being "bad." They can be cliques of mean girls seeking to snub an outsider. Or they can be smart, slightly nerdy boys who are seeking revenge. It often begins with otherwise nice kids who go online to have some "fun" at someone else’s expense. But too often this "fun" leads to threatening attacks and someone needs to stop cyber bullying..
So how can you stop cyber bullying?  
Well, the first thing to realize is that someone who uses e-mail, instant messaging, text messaging, or chat rooms to hurt another person is guilty of a cowardly act. The brave thing to do is to shut them down, even if it doesn’t feel that way. If you or anybody you know is a victim of a cyber bully, consider the following suggestions to stop cyber bullying.
1. As tempted as you might be, don’t reply to the messages of a cyber bully. She wants to know you are worried and upset, that her attack is working. Don’t give her that satisfaction. Also, your response will give her an opportunity to strike again. Without your feedback, the game loses its thrill. So take five. Walk away to do something you enjoy.
2. Save the evidence, don’t delete or erase the messages. Don’t read them if you don’t want to, but keep a printed record. The header information will be helpful in tracking where it came from. You might need it to prove your case later on to stop cyber bullying.
3.  As embarrassed or scared as you might feel, please don’t keep what’s happening to yourself. Tell your parents or another adult. They will let your Internet provider or your mobile phone service know what’s going on.
4. Realize by keeping a profile on your Web site, you become an easy target for bullies you know and ones you don’t.
5. Remember that emails are not as private as you think. A message sent to a friend can be easily forwarded to others without your knowledge. It sounds harsh but never includes any information in an email that you wouldn’t want everyone to see.
6. Google yourself to make sure your name isn’t in any unwanted places. If it is, please tell an adult.
7. Harassment is a reason for stopping a person’s online service. It’s not "honest" or "funny" to hurt someone. Ever. And defending yourself is a step closer to becoming the strong, smart, sensitive woman those who love you already see.

To stop Cyber Bullying, STOP, BLOCK, and TELL.

• Stop before you answer back. Then you won’t be tempted to say something you’ll regret.
• Block the sender. Then Tell someone you trust about the message. Your parents, the parents of the harasser, school, even the police, are all there to help.

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