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May 25 , 2010

1 in 12 kids victims of cyber-bullying, Ipsos study

26% of Canadian parents unsure

A recent study by Ipsos Reid, conducted on behalf of Trend Micro, has found that 8 percent of Canadian parents of children aged 7-17 indicate that their child had been cyber-bullied. Known instances of cyber bullying increase with the age of the child. The prevalence of cyber bullying increases to 11 percent among those aged 16-17. One-quarter (26 percent) of parents stated that they could not be sure if their child had been a victim. This number rises to 34 percent for parents of children between the ages of 13-15.

Study author Mark Laver notes, “Cyber-bullying is one of the unintended consequences of the digital age we now live in, the fact that some parents do not know about the online habits of their children is possibly more troublesome. The Internet, smartphones and mobile phones have given children an additional channel to bully their peers.”

Females are more likely to report that their child has been a victim of cyber bullying (9 percent vs. 6 percent for males). Additionally, the incidence of cyber bullying increases as household income decreases.

“While bullying is not a new phenomenon, the Internet has given bullies the ability to amplify their actions through mass communication and to do it from anywhere at any time,” says Lynette Owens, director of corporate outreach for Trend Micro’s Internet Safety for Kids & Families program. “While most kids are not prone to engaging in such behavior, we need to teach all kids to refrain from victimizing others online as much as we need to show them how to be safe online.”

For more information on the survey, please visit: http://trendmicro.mediaroom.com/index.php?s=23

For tips and tools on how to deal with cyber-bullying, please visit: www.trendmicro.com/go/safety

A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of +/-3.03 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of [insert] in Canada been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

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