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Asker

To Sam

CYBER BULLYING

I WAS ON FACE BOOK WHEN SOMEONE ASKED ME WHERE I LIVE,MY FULL NAME,MY PHONE NUMBER AND IF WE WANTED TO MEET UP. I DIDNT REPLY SO THEY STARTED SWEARING AT ME,WRITING BAD STUFF ABOUT ME ALL OVER THE INTERNET AND SAYING LIKE THAT IM UGLY,I HAVE A BAD DRESS SENCE WHEN WE HAVE NEVER EVEN MET SO HE DOES NOT NO WHAT I LOOK LIKE. WHAT SHALL I DO??
Ask Sam

Sam


Hello,

Thank you for your letter. I’m glad you wrote in to talk about this as online safety is really important.

You’ve told me someone contacted you through facebook and they were asking some very personal questions. I can imagine that might have been quite frightening, as this was someone you have never met. You did the right thing not to reply to them, even when he got angry and was swearing and saying some horrible things about you.

What you have described is a form of cyberbullying and you have a right to get help to make it stop. Remember that what has happened is not your fault and you’ve done the right thing to tell me about it. It would be also a good idea to think about sharing this with an adult you trust, or even with a friend.

You can block particular people on Facebook from being able to contact you or view the information on your profile, and this might be something you want to think about for this guy. I also really recommend changing the setting on your Facebook so that only your friends can see it. Take a look at the Social networking page in Explore, for more information about staying safe online.

You said you don't know the person who is sending these messages. Unfortunately, there are some dangerous people online, and sometimes they will try and trick young people into sharing information about themselves. They might even pretend to be a lot younger than they really are. If you are worried that this might have happened to you, you can report it to an organisation called CEOP. They work with the police to help young people stay safe online. You can send CEOP a report by using the ClickCeop button on Facebook or by going to their website. There's lots of information on their website about what will happen if you tell them about something that worried you online. They also have lots of good advice about staying safe online on their Think You Know website.

It’s important not to cope alone with this and if you are still worried then you can talk to a ChildLine counsellor by calling 0800 1111 (free from any phone), logging in for a 1-2-1 chat or sending an email.

Take care,

Sam

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