New Cyberbullying Survey – What Parents Think

A new survey by telecom firm Primus Telecommunications Canada titled Protecting Canadian Families Online was released this week that puts some statistics around how parents are thinking about, and talking to their kids about cyberbullying.

The survey, which polled 1,000 parents of kids between the ages of 8 – 16, was conducted in April of this year and the results have been augmented by data from bullying prevention PREVNet in an attempt to paint a full picture. We have added some data and comments of our own.

Among the highlights:

  • Half of parents are worried that their child could be cyberbullying others
  • About half of parents are concerned that their child could be cyberbullied including 53% of parents with girls and 43% of parents with boys

According to other published research, girls are more likely to report being cyberbullied than boys, although boys may be more reluctant to report it. More boys (26%) than girls (20%) admitted to doing some form of cyberbullying, although 55% of those claim that they were doing it as a joke.

  • Parents who themselves have been victim of bullying are more worried about their kids being cyberbullied than those who were not (39% vs. 31%)
  • 89% of parents report that their kids would tell them if they were being cyberbullied
  • Only 8% cent of teens report cyberbullying to their parents (PREVNet)

Again, separate research shows that one third of kids who are cyberbullied report it to parents. Either way, more than half of cyberbullying incidents are going unreported.

Parents are starting too late talking to their kids about cyberbullying:

  • 72% of parents of 8 year olds have spoken to their kids about real-world bullying
  • Only 33% of parents of 8 year olds have spoken to their kids about cyberbullying

Parents need to start talking to their kids about cyberbullying as soon as they have an internet-connected device – including handheld gaming platforms. Cyberbullying can start early – much earlier than many parents assume – and unless the victim has been taught how to react, it can escalate quickly.


Contact ThirdParent any time for help and resources for monitoring child and teen internet activity.

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