Internet harassment is becoming more prevalent at work, as well as at home and in schools, and is addressed in the following OSH Answers documents: Bullying in the Workplace Internet Harassment or Cyberbullying Violence and Harassment in the Workplace Violence and Harassment in the Workplace - Family (Domestic) Violence Violence and Harassment in the Workplace - Legislation
What are some instances of online bullying or harassment?
Internet harrassment, also known as ""cyberbullying,"" is the term used to describe the use of the Internet to bully, harass, threaten, or maliciously embarrass. It can involve behaviors such as: Sending unsolicited and/or threatening e-mail. Encouraging others to send the victim unsolicited and/or threatening e-mail or to overwhelm the victim with e-mail messages. Sending viruses by e-mail (electronic
What are some recommendations for avoiding online bullying?
In the workplace, use a gender-neutral email address if you have the option. Make your e-mail password at least twelve (12) characters long, though longer passwords may be appropriate. Make sure that it is a combination of capital and lower-case letters, numbers, and symbols. The best passwords don't spell anything and don't follow a logical pattern. Change your password frequently.
What should you do if someone sends you harassing emails?
If the harasser is someone who works at your place of employment, report the incident(s) in accordance with your company's policies and procedures for workplace bullying, harassment, and violence. If the harasser is someone you know, make it clear that you do not want them to contact you again. If you are receiving harassing e-mail from someone you do not know, block or filter the e-mail.
What should you do if someone is openly harassing you (in a chat room or discussion group)?
Keep a record of any harassing activity in a discussion group, save all harassing messages for evidence both electronically and in hard copy (print), and DO NOT edit them in any way. If the administrator of the group does not respond, stop participating in the group (i.e., have your email removed from the group's distribution list). In a live chat situation, log off.
What should you do if someone is using social media to intimidate or harass you?
You can find these guidelines by searching for pages on ""Terms and Conditions"" or ""Community Standards/Guidelines"" Most applications (""apps"") and social media platforms (including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Snapchat) have published guidelines that specify what is and is not permitted to be posted on their sites. These platforms also have a mechanism for reporting abuse of these guidelines. When filing a complaint, use the tips mentioned above about documenting your situation.
What should you NOT do if you get harassing or abusive email messages?
Wait until you are composed and calm before sending or responding to emails; you do not want to be mistaken for the harasser. DO NOT rush into a confrontation because you run the risk of starting a ""flame war"" that can quickly escalate. DO NOT respond to flaming (provocation online). DO NOT participate in any question and answer situations that make you uncomfortable."""