A massive 32% of South African parents claim that cyberbullying is a top concern when it comes to worries about their children, according to the “Responsible Digital Parenting” survey.

It is no surprise as this Internet phenomenon has already caused such problems as decreased self-esteem (35%), a negative impact on a child’s performance at school (34%), social isolation (28%) and depression (18%).

Additionally, 32% of children in South Africa have actually come across cyberbullying, be that being bullies themselves, seeing cases among their friends or being bullied.

This impressive number should make parents think about the ways to prevent the proliferation of this phenomenon – however, not all parents are aware of this; 28% of them have not discussed the ethics of the Internet with their child, while a quarter of them have not discussed safety rules on the Internet.

“There has always existed a certain threat landscape for parents, however, now it includes digital ones which can often be invisible as not every child tells their family about ongoing cyberbullying, for instance,” says Andrey Sidenko, head of child safety at Kaspersky Network.

“According to our survey, 24% find it hard to say whether something threatens their child on the Internet thus not communicating enough on the topic. These are quite disturbing statistics.”