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Mumbai: Monitor kids’ social media interactions: Cops to parents

11:27 PM Sep 26, 2021 | Somendra Sharma

Also Read: Ayushmann Khurrana flags off initiative to protect kids from cyber bullying

The state cyber department has issued an advisory to tackle cyber bullying of children. An increasing number of parents are reporting that their children are being bullied online.

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In fact, the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data reveals that Maharashtra has registered the maximum number of cyber bullying/stalking cases wherein children are the victims last year. The state cyber advisory asks parents to remain cautious about their children’s social media interactions.

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According to the NCRB statistics, in 2020, a total of 140 cases of cyber bullying/stalking of children were registered across the country, of which 69 cases were filed in Maharashtra. Andhra Pradesh stood second with 32 cases, followed by Uttar Pradesh with 14 cases.

Informing about the modus operandi used by the cyber bullies, the advisory states, “Perpetrators threaten, harass, and/or embarrass children by using technology. Such elements use social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, etc and may post comments or rumours about kids that are mean, hurtful or embarrassing.” The advisory further explains, “Perpetrators may be threatening to hurt someone or provoke kids to harm themselves and post a hurtful image or video. Action of perpetrators is to manipulate, harass and defame children.”

Officials from the Cyber Department said that parents must play a major role in ensuring children do not fall into the trap of online bullying. “Maintain regulated checks on children's online activities. Beware of inappropriate behaviour while kids are using social media. Interact with children if they are experiencing depression, hopelessness and suicidal thoughts. Watch the type of responses and comments which children get on their posts,” the advisory concludes.

Last year, a combined 217 cases of cyber bullying/stalking against women and children were registered in 19 metros across the country, of which Mumbai registered the maximum 105 cases, followed by Hyderabad (49 cases), the NCRB statistics revealed.

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