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"Think before you post, because once you do, it's going to be up there forever," Shehan says.
A child's online reputation is a growing concern, Aftab says, with the rise of online social networking and profiles.
Cyberbullying differs from schoolyard bullying, Handy says. "When it happens online, there's no one to filter it," she says.More predators are now scouring social networking sites, such as My Space and Xanga, because these sites have centralized so much information, Shehan says.A child's profile typically includes photos, personal interests and blogs.Software filters aren't a perfect solution; some nasty sites can slip through, while educational or family-rated sites may be blocked.So while some parents may wonder whether monitoring means they're spying on their kids, the safety factor often wins out.
"They come across to the children as their new best friend.