School cyberbullies at higher risk of suicide, finds study
Children who bully their schoolmates online are themselves more likely to commit suicide, a new study has found.
While those who are bullied are likely to suffer emotionally as a result, researchers say that the bullies are too at a higher risk of harming themselves.
The UK-based researchers reviewed a number of studies from over 30 countries on the effect of cyberbullying, reports The Independent.
They found that victims of bullying were twice as likely to self-harm and show signs of suicidal behaviour than children who had not been bullied.
Meanwhile, children who bullied others online were 20 per cent more likely to commit suicide themselves than non-bullies.
"The people doing the bullying themselves have issues that cause them to act in that way, so it is unsurprising to see that the cyberbullies themselves, in turn, have these quite marked problems," said Professor Paul Montgomery, of the University of Birmingham.
He recommended that schools should go beyond simply having policies in order to tackle the problem.
"Prevention of cyberbullying should be included in school anti-bullying policies, alongside broader concepts such as digital citizenship, online peer support for victims, how an electronic bystander might appropriately intervene and more specific interventions such as how to contact mobile phone companies and internet service providers to block, educate or identify users," he said.