An GARDA Síochána are
reminding parents and young people in Inishowen of
the potentially devastating impact of cyber bullying
and its ability to destroy lives.
Cyber bullying is the use of technology to harass,
threaten, embarrass or target another person.
Although more prevalent amongst young people, it can
happen to anyone at any age.
Detective Chief Superintendent Declan Daly, Garda
National Protective Services Bureau, said: "Cyber
bullying can have a significant impact on people’s
lives. The Garda Online Child Exploitation Unit is
committed to tackling it in an impactful way.”
In Ireland, the Digital Age of Consent is 16. Young
people under the age of 16 may not sign up for
online services, such as social media sites, without
the explicit approval of their parent or guardian.
"If you do decide to give your child permission to
use social media sites, the best online safety
strategy is to talk with your child and engage with
their use of the Internet,” said Detective Chief
He continued: "We wish to encourage victims of cyber
bullying to report the bullies and provide us with
the evidence to help ensure that other people do not
become victims of this terrible behaviour.”
Sergeant Mary McCormack, Online Child Exploitation
Unit, provides advice and tips on reporting cyber bullying.
Tips for Parents and Guardians
• Know the sites your child visits, learn about the
protections provided by these sites, apps and
available on your child’s device.
• Teach your child that whatever information is
posted or shared online, will stay online.
• Encourage your child to tell you if they receive
messages that they feel disturbed by or
• Discuss ways the child can deal with disturbing
material should they accidently come across it.
• Implement the parental controls available on all
IOS and android devices.
• If you find out your child is being bullied, print
out and keep evidence of bullying and block the
culprit. Then report the problem.
Reporting Cyber Bullying
• Keep evidence, don’t delete anything.
• Save the messages or take screenshots.
• Stop all communication and block the person.
• Tell An Garda Síochána.
• Don’t delete the account as this evidence will
help the Gardaí.
Tips for young people
• Cyber bullying destroys lives. Stop and think
before you post, anyone may see, forward, or
screenshot that post.
• Only post messages you wouldn’t mind your parents
or teachers seeing. Remember whatever you share
online stays there.
• Contact your parent, guardian, teacher or an adult
you trust if you are being bullied online. Do not
respond to the bully, report it!
• Online manners matter. Always treat others how you
want to be treated, with respect.