Being online is in vogue for youngsters. It seems “cool” when you have an online identity. Being well known and being known well enough is one of the status symbols. Fame was once an attribute of the celebrities whom we saw on screen in the world of glamour, but now everyone can be famous. The world has even become more generous as the horizons of being “socially acceptable” have expanded. Social network is available in numerous forms too, Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, Twitter, Viber, Snack video, YouTube, Tik Tok, and so on.
Youngsters have an easy access to internet and social networking sites which makes it all the more vulnerable to fall into traps of cyber bullies. The term cyber bullying is not new, especially to those who have fallen victim to it. Social media makes things go viral, and the irony of it lies on the fact that people publish the privatest of their information and data. This information is shared by them just for the sake of gaining popularity although nothing comes without a price. The price of being popular is high, but it is denied by people till they have to pay it.
The facts which we all need to consider are: do not share personal information, phone number, scanned documents or certificates, pictures of family or ourselves, signatures, address, assets, bank balance, financial status, or whereabouts. When information of being away at a Hill Station is shared, robbers can get advantage of it and may plan a robbery at your house knowing the address from social media.
People also create fake ids misusing the name, contact number and family pictures of a person, in this case, some pictures are real whereas others can be photo shopped and edited to a dangerous extent. Theft can be committed on online banking sites too by logging in with your details and asking you to share the OTP, which can cause you to lose all your money. Moreover, cyber bullying can attain more serious forms which can leave never ending imprints on our minds.
Teenagers have this pressure of having more fans and being admired by more people. They have to post weird stuff on daily, or weekly or at times fortnightly basis, to earn more likes than any of their comrades or rivals. To do so, they sometimes have to spend large amount of money so that they can brag about being at a Hill Station, or at an expensive restaurant with their family. The pressure rises when a birthday or anniversary is approaching, and you have to dramatize it and glorify it. People who even see you in a “acceptable” mode, are not always happy or feel proud of you, they get envious and cast evil eyes on your success. No matter how superstitious it may sound, it is a bitter truth. Jealousy is the worst of emotions which may lead to devastating consequences. Some of these envious lot become those heinous stalkers who steal our information and misuse it for their jealous egos.
The history of cybercrimes is full of unimaginable stories where a youngster committed suicide or had suicidal thoughts, got into depression, developed phobias, or experienced attacks of anxiety, due to cyber bullying. Majority of these victims are unable to report the incidents as they have breached the trust of parents, elder siblings, or those to whom they are accountable. The fact that elders had already warned them of the pros and cons of web, but they crossed their boundaries despite all warning, stops them from sharing their problems and sinks them deeper into the abyss of self-harm.
Being cyber safe is one of the necessities of modern life. The foremost step in this regard is of being alert and not let others use your gadgets and devices like mobile phone and laptop. Secondly, you should always log out of all social media accounts after using it and must not stay logged in. Saving password would be the worst mistakes ever. The account should be password protected too, as no one else should be allowed to use your id and post something wrong about you.
In case, someone has misused your information and is cyber bullying you, you should communicate it to someone trustworthy in your family. You can even report it to FIA which is meant to sort out such issues. Falling in a trap is just a mistake which every human is liable to commit but hiding it and denying it is a sin which can go to irreparable extent if not dealt with in time. Being online is not dangerous, so far as it is within the safe boundaries of being cyber safe.
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