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Many workers do their work using the computer and the Internet. Internet harassment is being identified as a concern at work, as well as at home and school.
Please refer to the following OSH Answers documents for more information:
Internet harassment, also referred to as “cyberbullying”, is the term used to describe the use of the Internet to bully, harass, threaten, or maliciously embarrass. It can involve behaviours such as:
While every situation is different, in general, steps to help prevent cyberbullying can include:
In the workplace:
If the person is a member of your workplace:
If someone is harassing you by e-mail (in general):
In a discussion group:
In a live chat situation:
Most applications (“apps”) and social media sites (such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Snapchat) have published guidelines that state what is and is not okay to be posted on their sites. You can find these guidelines by looking for pages on “Terms and Conditions”, or Community Standards/Guidelines. These sites also have a mechanism for reporting abuse of these guidelines. When making a complaint, use the advice provided above about documenting your situation. Include a screenshot of the comment or a copy of the photograph as evidence when you submit your report. If you feel you are in immediate danger, contact the local police or law enforcement agency.
As a user, you can also opt to take action, such as:
DO NOT send or reply to e-mail when you are angry or upset. Wait until you are calm and composed; you do not want to become perceived as the harasser.
DO NOT rush into a confrontation. You can risk starting a “flame war” which can rapidly escalate.
DO NOT respond to flaming (provocation online).
DO NOT engage in any question and answer scenarios that make you feel uncomfortable.
(From: Violence in the Workplace Prevention Guide, CCOHS)