Social media was created to keep friends and family in touch by breaking the barriers of both distance and busy life schedules, and while various platforms have made it possible to do just that, the outcomes are not always so sweet. Before long, the pleasantries and lovely photographs had turned into hateful comments and vulgar images. In fact, as of 2018, there was an estimate of over 30 million cyber attacks. And as the internet world has continued to expand, it has created a growing space and various loopholes for more digital bullies to carry out their agendas.
Shortly after the creation of online social networking platforms, threats of violence and explicit material flooded the net, making it a dangerous place for people, especially minors, to dwell. After much lobbying, the Online Safety Bill was created to clear up some of the filth. And while this bill has been in effect for years, its purpose was merely to protect the youth by promptly removing and banning any abusive material geared towards them, leaving the adults to fend for themselves.
Since then, virtual platforms have been trusted to create their own guidelines to protect the safety of their users, yet without the proper support, adult participants continue to fall victim to vicious online attacks, including, but not limited to, cruel messages, death threats, revenge porn, and threats of physical violence. And with such loose laws in place, many of these instances go without consequence.
However, help is on the way. Referred to as the ‘World-First Adult Cyber Abuse Scheme’, the federal government is finally taking legal steps to preserve the safety of adult online users. Not only is a cyberbully liable to face up to $110,000 in fines for their poor actions, but their respective platform is also being held accountable. These new laws are proposing that online platforms have up to 24 hours to remove all devastatingly offensive and abusive material, or they will be fined up to $550,000. In addition to these hefty fines, the eSafety Commissioner has been permitted to take matters into their own hands by removing the vulgar content themselves, leaving no room for rebellion against such a plausible cause.
While the terms of this bill appear to be quite promising, the federal government is still working through its intimate details. So until things are more concrete, online adult social platform participants are in charge of their own safekeeping. To properly manage any threats, it is best to immediately report any degree of cyber attack to the platform’s support team, block inappropriate users, identify the signs of a fake account, and keep detailed records of suspicious activity.
There are also a few trusted websites that work as allies to protect your safety online. MyLife.com is a reputable site that provides valuable details about online users, including their overall reputation via their Reputation Scores and Profiles. This information can help you uncover a person’s true identity, motives, and whether or not they can be trusted to communicate with, thereby drastically reducing the chances of allowing someone to become linked with a dangerous person.
As the internet will probably outlive us all, it is nice to know that things will brighten up soon. Kudos to the federal government, and companies like MyLife, for taking actionable steps to improve the safety of the internet community as a whole and finally putting an end to the long-winded reign of online trolls.