– We see how many young people that are subjected to sexual harassments. Due to this there is a risk that young people start to accept harassments and intimidations that no one should have to take, says Friends’ Secretary General Lars Arrhenius.

One in three girls and one in four boys have been subjected to online sexual harassments in the past year. This is one of the conclusions in Friends Online Report 2016, produced in collaboration with HP PPS Sweden AB, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Symantec.*

The Friends Online Report, mapping Swedish children and young peoples’ lives online, is published for the fourth year in a row. This year’s survey focused on sexual harassments. These harassments and intimidations are closely linked to norms for how girls and boys are expected to be. While girls most often face derogatory comments about their appearance, boys are often harassed or intimidated when the surroundings think that they are not following the expectations for how boys should behave.

Facts from the report:

  • One of three girls and one of four boys have been subjected to online sexual harassments in the past year.
  • One third of young people have been subjected to online harassment or intimidation in the past year.
  • Three in ten young people experience racially motivated harassment or intimidation online.
  • 55 % of young people talk to an adult at home if they have been subjected to bullying, harassment or intimidation online.
  • Kik is the most common place for harassment or intimidation in social media.
  • 8 % of girls and 5 % of boys have been subjected to bullying via mobile phone, computer or tablets in the past year.

The situation can be changed!

One of the keys factors in creating a safer and more secure online environment is the involvement of adults. As an adult you need to talk to your child and allow for online activities to be a part of the every day conversation. This year’s survey also shows that your opinion as a parent matters. When young people rank the persons with most influence on their online behavior, mom and dad are number one and two.

– As a parent it is important to show interest in young peoples’ online life and teach them basic security measures to protect oneself. This makes children more cautious and inclined to talk to you about online harassment and intimidation, so that you can create a nice online environment together, says Ola Rehnberg, Security expert at Symantec.

The issue of online harassment and intimidation continues to engage many people – children, young people and adults. Schools from all over Sweden are very interested in meeting Friends and all these meetings is another important key factor to create a nicer online climate.

– That this many children and young people are exposed is very disquieting. We are proud to support Friends in their magnificent work against online bullying, says Stefan Bergdahl, CEO at HP PPS Sweden AB.

– For us it is a given to support Friends. Our common involvement against online bullying, harassment and intimidation is incredibly important, says Kjell Ahlzén, CEO, Hewlett Packard Enterprise.

About the Online Report: The survey was conducted October 14-26, 2015 and was made by TNS/Sifo. 1,015 children and young adults participated. Questions about sexual harassments or intimidations have only been asked to 13-16 year olds.

Read Friends Online Report 2016 (pdf)

For more information, please contact
Anders Gustafsson, Public Relations Manager
Tel: +4670 725 54 13
Mail: anders.gustafsson@friends.se

*Friends Online Report is a part of the project ‘Schysst på Nätet’ (Be Nice Online) which is a collaboration between Friends, HP PPS Sweden AB, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Symantec. The project is based on Friends’ knowledge about the problems concerning bullying, Symantec’s experience and knowledge about online security as well as the HP companies’ ambition to contribute to the work against bullying. The project is directed towards children, young people and adults and includes training courses to support schools, preschools and sports clubs in their work against online harassment and intimidation.