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Cyber bullying worries half NZ parents

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 24/01/2017

Half of New Zealand parents are worried their children are more likely to be bullied online than they are in a playground, according to a survey.

A report by Norton Cyber Security has found that many parents are concerned that bullying doesn't stop when their child leaves school.

"As long as your child is connected to a device, a bully can connect to them," vice president of the Norton's consumer business unit, Gavin Lowth, said.

The report said only 10 per cent of New Zealand parents have reported cyberbullying of their child.

However, the report says this figure is likely wrong as it may be under-reported, as many parents don't recognise the signs of cyberbullying.

More than two thirds of Kiwi parents allow their children to access the internet before they're 11, despite having numerous concerns.

Children may stay silent about cyberbullying as they're worried about losing devices and access to the internet, or that their parents will embarrass them or make the problem worse by contacting the bully's parents or the school.

Parents were also concerned about their children:

* Downloading malicious programs or a virus (58 per cent)

* Disclosing too much personal information (57 per cent)

* Being lured into meeting a stranger (43 per cent)

* Do something online that makes the whole family vulnerable, embarrassed, or may affect future with job or university prospects.

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