Experiencing online bullying, abuse and harassment can be difficult, but Netsafe can help you through it with our free and confidential service.
How to get help
Fill out an online contact form or call us toll-free seven days a week on 0508 NETSAFE.
Our contact centre is open 8am – 8pm Monday to Friday, and 9am – 5pm on weekends.
Our friendly team will ask you some questions to understand what’s going on, and then we’ll work with you to create a plan to help.
If you’re concerned about the immediate safety of you or someone else, call 111.
Not quite ready to talk to us? You can find advice here.
What can we help with?
We can offer advice for lots of different situations. For example, when someone has produced something online that:
- Try to get someone to hurt themselves
- Shares intimate images without consent (leaked nudes and revenge porn)
- Encourage other people to send harmful messages to someone
- Most people would think is offensive
- Shared someone’s sensitive private information without their permission
- Made a false allegation about someone
- Shared confidential information about someone without their permission
- Put someone down because of who they are, where they come from or what they believe in
- Were indecent or obscene
- Threatened to hurt someone or damage their property
- Tried to make someone get naked or do something sexual online
Why contact Netsafe?
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 the online bullying, harassment and abuse.
How Netsafe can help
Netsafe can help in lots of ways. We can let you know if there’s anything you can do to stop the abuse and how to stay safe. We can also work with you and the person harassing you to get them to stop. This could include letting them know what might happen if the case is taken to the District Court. We can also reach out to online content hosts, like Facebook and Twitter, to ask them to block or remove harmful content.
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. We can inform both parties of the options available to them to resolve the situation, including the option to apply to the District Court.
Netsafe will never contact the person who has been harassing you without your permission.
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. 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 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.
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.
What if Netsafe can’t stop it?
If we can’t help you resolve the issue you may be able to go to the District Court, but you need to have tried to resolve things with us first. We can let you know what might happen if the case is taken to the District Court, and how to make an application.
Can I use Netsafe’s service to ‘get back’ at someone?
Netsafe’s service focusses 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.
- 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.