Interventions for children, youth, and parents to prevent and reduce cyber or online abuse

Added April 17, 2020

Citation: Mishna F, Cook C, Saini M, et al. Interventions for children, youth, and parents to prevent and reduce cyber abuse. Campbell Systematic Reviews 2009; 2

What is this: During the COVID-19 pandemic, some schools have been closed to try to reduce the spread of the disease. This means that children might be spending more time online and the risk of cyber abuse and bullying might increase, raising the need for effective interventions to prevent and reduce it.

In this Campbell systematic review, the authors searched for research assessing the effects of interventions intended to increase internet safety knowledge and decreasing risky online behaviour. They did not restrict their search by language of publication and searched for studies published in the ten years to 2009. They included three studies (2713 participants). One study was from Canada and the other two were done in the USA.

What was found: Interventions to protect against cyber abuse increase a child’s knowledge as to what constitutes abuse but do not have an effect on risky behaviour, such as disclosing one’s name, participating in open chat rooms or emailing strangers.

What’s uncertain: More recent research might change the conclusions of this review.


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