New research has found a worrying amount of teenagers have experienced cyber bullying over the last year.
Today, CyberSafeKids, a national online safety charity, have revealed their report for 2023 which revealed the online habits of young people in Ireland.
The research is based on 8-12-year-olds as well as 12-16-year-olds.
The report surveyed over 5,000 primary and secondary-aged school children and found that 40% of 12-16-year-olds have experienced bullying online.
Of this number, 43% of girls had been bullied online, compared to 30% of boys and 74% non-binary teenagers.
28% of girls that had experienced bullying kept it to themselves, while 46% of boys didn’t tell anyone they were being cyberbullied, and 64% of non-binary children didn’t report the online bullying to anybody.
1 in 4 children aged 8-12 years old had admitted to being cyberbullied and of these primary school-aged students, 28% didn’t tell anyone about it.
The research also found that 31% of 8-12-year-olds had unrestricted access to the internet, with 93% of those who took part in the study owning a smart device.
Over the last year, 26% of this group revealed they ‘saw or experienced something that bothered them online’, and 31% kept this information to themselves.
Chairperson John Fitzsimons released a statement about the findings of the report and explained, “ As parents we need to monitor our kids’ devices and check in with them regularly to discuss what they are consuming online”.
“We also need to remember that parental controls are not foolproof and cannot replace hands-on involvement”.
He went on to add, “Key among the recommendations outlined in the report is the need for Government to make online safety and digital literacy a core curricular subject at both primary and secondary levels”.
“Additionally, let us not forget that the onus to make the online world safer for our children also lies with the online service providers who need to provide adequate age assurance mechanisms and a safer age-appropriate experience for younger children with the timely removal of harmful and inappropriate content”.