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Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have a question about policing or the law? You may be able to find the answer here.

Through our frequently asked questions section we aim to help you find the answers you need without having to call us to ask for information. We've provided answers to questions on a range of topics which are regularly asked of police forces up and down the country.

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Cyberbullying is any form of bullying that takes place online. This could be blackmail/threats, abusive comments, spreading rumours, sharing embarrassing pictures or creating fake profiles on social networking sites.

Though there is no specific offence of cyberbullying, you could be found guilty under an existing offence. For example sending someone threatening, abusive messages can lead to an offence of harassment (Q770) and posting sexual photographs of someone without their consent could be a criminal offence under the revenge porn law. (Q834).

Victims of Cyberbullying may be unaware as to what help is available to them. If the bullying is taking place on a social networking site (Facebook, Twitter etc.) you should contact them directly as they have policies in place to remove inappropriate material and if necessary, the bully's account, see link in related information.

If you are a child/young person then contact Childline for more help and guidance, see link in related information.

The behaviour could potentially amount to a criminal offence, we would suggest that you contact your local policing team via the non-emergency 101 number and report the matter.

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Answers in this FAQ section are provided by the 'Ask the Police' website. Produced by the Police National Legal Database (PNLD) team, 'Ask the Police' is an official police site approved by the National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC). All FAQ answers are © PNLD.