The death of Charlotte Dawson earlier this year placed the spotlight back on cyberbullying and the devastating effects that this behaviour can have on a person’s life.
If your child has experienced any of the following, please seek legal advice:
- abusive emails and/or texts online that are cruel and hurtful;
- photos that are embarrassing, misleading and inappropriate;
- online threats that target them or a group of their friends.
“Why, what can we do?”
Did you know that cyber bullying can amount to a criminal offence?
Cyber bullying can be considered abuse of the internet and phone services and presently, there are laws in place that provide a form of redress for individuals who have been targeted.
Under the Criminal Code Act 1995(Cth), offenders can be charged with using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause offence. The penalty for menacing, harassing or offensive cyber bullying is up to 3 years in jail.
If someone has posted content online that is inappropriate, ask the person responsible to remove it. If the person fails to remove the content, contact the service provider. There is an obligation that social network sites remove content that is offensive and intimidating.
Cyber bullying can be a complex issue, if you believe your child is being bullied online, please seek legal advice immediately.