Abu Dhabi police warn against cyber bullying
On Tuesday, Abu Dhabi police warned parents against cyber bullying on social media apps. Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: Police have cautioned parents to watch out for bullying on their children’s social media groups, especially as distance learning is expected to continue until the end of the term.

On Tuesday, Abu Dhabi Police explained that while a number of study groups were created with the aim of enhancing the development and education of students, a number of children have taken advantage of the situation and abused social media groups to bully others.

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Brigadier General Mohammad Suhail Al Rashidi, Director of Criminal Security at the Abu Dhabi Police, called on parents to monitor their children’s online activities to protect them from cyber bullying, as well as from blackmail and other forms of online abuse.

Cyber bullying or "cyber harassment" is a form of bullying or harassment using electronic means. It is also known as online bullying. It has become increasingly common, especially among teenagers.

All types of cyberbullying or cybercrimes should be reported online at www.ecrime.ae or via the Interior Ministry’s hotline dedicated to receive bullying reports from schools around the country through dialling the toll free number 116111.

In 2019, a study of 700 UAE-based parents by Cartoon Network MENA suggested that 85 per cent of schoolchildren in the country have been bullied, mostly online.

What is cyber bullying?

Cyber bullying is bullying that takes place over digital devices like cell phones, computers and tablets. Cyber bullying can occur through SMS, text and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where people can view, participate in, or share content. Cyber bullying includes sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false or mean content about someone else. It can include sharing personal or private information about someone else causing embarrassment or humiliation. Some cyberbullying crosses the line into unlawful or criminal behaviour.