Online bullying, abuse and harassment can be hard to deal with. We offer a free and confidential service to help you understand the options available to you for dealing with the situation.
What can we help with?
We can offer advice for lots of different situations. This includes online bullying, abuse and harassment, and when someone has put something online that:
- Tries to get someone to hurt themselves
- Shares intimate images without consent (leaked nudes and revenge porn)
- Encourages other people to send harmful messages to someone
- Most people would think is very offensive
- Shares someone’s sensitive private information without their permission
- Makes a false allegation about someone
- Shares confidential information about someone without their permission
- Puts someone down because of their colour, race, ethnic or national origins, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or disability
- Is indecent or obscene
- Threatens to hurt someone or damage their property
How Netsafe can help
When you contact us, our friendly team will ask you some questions to understand what’s happening. Once we know what’s going on, we’ll let you know what can be done to help.
We’ll tell you what you can do to keep safe, and if there’s anything that can be done to stop the abuse. We may try to work with the person who is harassing you to get them to stop – but we won’t contact them unless you say it’s OK.
We might also be able to contact the person or the organisation that runs the website, app or service that the messages or posts are on and ask for their help to resolve the issue.
Our service aims to lessen the harm caused to people targeted online by using mediation and negotiation to reach a resolution for both parties. Netsafe cannot punish people for their actions online, or force them to take action.
Not quite ready to talk to us? You can find advice about online bullying here.
Netsafe will never contact the person who has been harassing you without your permission.
How to get help
Fill out an online contact form, email email@example.com or call us toll-free on 0508 NETSAFE (0508 638 723).
Our contact centre is open 8am – 8pm Monday to Friday, and 9am – 5pm on weekends.
If you’re concerned about the immediate safety of you or someone else, call 111.
Why contact Netsafe?
Netsafe is an independent, not for profit NZ organisation focused on online safety. We provide support and education to help people stay safe online.
Under The Harmful Digital Communications Act (the Act), Netsafe has been chosen to offer a free service for people in New Zealand to help with online bullying, harassment and abuse.
Can I contact Netsafe on behalf of someone else?
You can contact Netsafe for advice about a situation affecting another person, but Netsafe can’t take action unless the person targeted in the incident agrees to it. We can still provide information if you contact us on behalf of someone else. If you are the parent, guardian or caregiver of a young person you are able to contact Netsafe on behalf of them. Teachers and school leaders can contact Netsafe on behalf of a student.
Is the service free?
Netsafe’s service is free and confidential.
I’m a young person and I’m not quite sure how this works – what do I do?
Just give us a call, or complete an online contact form. You can choose whether you want us to call you back, or just email you. You can find more information about contacting us on our page for young people.
I consented to nude photos/videos being produced at the time, but I thought they’d remain private – what can I do?
If you gave your consent to intimate images/video being produced at the time, you can still get help if they’ve been shared without your consent. Read more about leaked photos, nudes and revenge porn here.
I don’t know if what I’m experiencing is serious enough to go to Netsafe. What should I do?
We can offer help for all situations – big or small. If you’re not quite ready to contact us, you can find online bullying advice here.
Do I need proof of the harassment?
It’s helpful if you have examples of what’s going on. If you can, take screenshots of the content that is being put online. You can find instructions about how to do this here.
Can I use Netsafe’s service to ‘get back’ at someone?
Netsafe’s service focuses on helping by using mediation and negotiation to reach a resolution. For example, we may be able to help get content removed from the internet that breaches one of the 10 communication principles and is causing serious emotional distress. Netsafe cannot punish people for their actions online.
I’m on holiday in New Zealand – can you still help me?
Yes. Anyone that is in New Zealand can help contact Netsafe for help.
- The Harmful Digital Communications Act
- Making an application to the District Court
- Reporting for teachers and school leaders
- Reporting for parents, caregivers and guardians
- Reporting for young people
- What is revenge porn?
Contact Netsafe for help by filling out an online contact form or call us toll-free seven days a week on 0508 NETSAFE.