Cyber-bullying and online grooming: Helping to protect against the risks

Louis Marinos, Alessandro Acquisti, Philip Anderson, Scott Cadzow, John Carr, Peter Dickman, Colin Gray, Christopher Laing, Vangelis Papakonstantinou, Aljosa Pasic, Sascha Schubert, Dimitrios Vogiatzis, Piotr Wiench

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned reportpeer-review


Children are the most valuable part of every society, regardless of culture, religion and national origin. Given the rapidly increasing digitalisation of their lives, it seemed important to assess risks related to internet usage and, in particular, the risk of become a victim of online grooming and cyber bullying activities. Today’s kids are living in an environment that is radically different from that of their parents; virtual environments are increasingly prevalent in private and education environments. This development is detrimental to their physical activities, social skills and the behavioural model that prevailed in previous generations. ENISA has formed a Working Group consisting of international experts in various disciplines related to the area of children’s online protection. Interdisciplinary knowledge and relevant experience in the area were the criteria of their engagement. During the selection phase of the scenario to be assessed, the expert group has identified cyber bullying and online grooming as an area that requires further elaboration. With this assessment we aim to demonstrate how attacks based on misuse of data (i.e. data mining and profiling) can affect minors. Although the issue of children’s exposure to internet risks has been addressed in great depth by many organisations (also during the generation of this report), we have performed this risk assessment in order to point out emerging risks and issue non-technical recommendations for their mitigation. Thus, we believe that the findings of this assessment will help in triggering further activities at various levels of society, while contributing to the necessary awareness of the online protection of minors.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationGreece
PublisherEuropean Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA)
Number of pages75
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sept 2011


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