What are Some of the Dangers that Teenagers Face When Using Social Media Platforms?
Teenagers are very smart and can quickly figure out how to operate technology. Their thirst for learning can possibly lead them down the wrong path. What dangers should you warn your child about that are lurking on the Internet before you allow them to use the family computer?
Disclosure: The opinions reflected in this post are my own and may differ from your own opinions.
This is a tactic that affects many individuals and not just teenagers. Online bullying has become a big issue and parents need to be aware that their child may end up a victim of an online bullying attack. Cyberbullying is the act of deliberately using technology to harm another individual. Adults have a hard time dealing with a cyberbully, but a teenager may not know how to handle the situation. Teach your child to never give out their personal information online, as some bullies will use this information to potentially harm your child. The best way to handle an online bully is to keep logs of hurtful/hateful comments or threats, using screen shot tools. Next block the person who is harassing you or your teenager. Be aware that once you block the bully, they may retaliate and create a new account so that they can continue harassing you or your teen. Protect yourself by learning how to be aware of what is going on around you while you are online, just as if you were walking around in the mall. At the mall you are paying attention to what is going on around you, the same tactic should be used online as well. Never add people that you don’t personally know or people who don’t have any profile information filled out. If you feel that your teenager is being bullied on or offline, you should keep an eye out for the following side effects: loneliness, lowered self-esteem, disappointment, disbelief, mistrust, self harm, and suicide.
This tends to happen more to adults but I feel that parents needs to know that it is possible that a teenager could be a victim of cyberstalking as well. A stalker will attempt to sabotage a person’s online reputation and follow them around using social media, public forums, and online information sites. The stalker sole intent is to harm a persons income, reputation, employment (even ruin those who are self-employed), and personal safety. They will often times make false accusations, monitor everything that you are doing, follow you around, steal your ideas, begin making online and potentially offline threats, attempt to damage your data or equipment (ie your computer, website), steal your identity, spread rumors about you, and harass you. Cyberstalking is a form of cyberbullying and it is punishable by law. If you feel that you are being cyberstalked, you need to report it to your local authorities and follow their advice. Documentation of these attacks if very important. Begin capturing the everything that the cyberstalker is doing in attempt to ruin your online reputation.