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Violence against women: Here's how to stay safe online

Violence against women: Here's how to stay safe online
Always put your safety first. Contact law enforcement or a safety support group if you’re feeling threatened, whether it’s online or offline. (Photo: Getty Images/Thinkstock)

The International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women is being observed across the world through multiple events such as marches, art competitions, cycling rallies and marathons as part of the United Nations System-wide activities for the 16 Days of activism against gender-based violence. This year, the UN theme is Generation Equality Stands against Rape! under the umbrella of the UN Secretary-General’s campaign UNiTE by 2030 to End Violence against Women.

Despite worldwide mobilisations led by survivors and activists in recent years through movements such as #MeToo, #TimesUp, #Niunamenos, #NotOneMore, #BalanceTonPorc, and others, sexual violence continues to be normalised and embedded in our social environment. From the trivialising of rape, victim-blaming, the objectification of women’s bodies in movies or TV, the glamorisation of violence in ads, or the constant use of misogynistic language, we are all daily witnesses to this “rape culture”, sometimes even silent bystanders, and have a responsibility to stop it.

UN Women Goodwill Ambassador Nicole Kidman has lent her voice to the cause of ending violence against women since 2006. On the occasion of the International Day, she said in a statement, “As a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, I know that we all have a role to play. The 16 Days campaign is a moment for the world to come together and take action. I urge you to join the campaign this year to stand against rape and be a part of the efforts to end all forms of violence against women.”

Even UN Environment Goodwill Ambassador Dia Mirza took to Instagram to post this message.

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Not just in the physical environment, many women fall prey to cyber crimes and may be prone to online abuse. Therefore, there is an equally cautious need to raise awareness of online abuse and how women can stay safe in the cyber world.

Here’s how women can stay safe online

*Be cautious when accepting friend requests on social messaging platforms.

*Select your audience with whom you want to share your posts.

*Turn off tag suggestions on Facebook and other social media platforms.

*Limit how people can search for your name using social platforms.

*Enable login notifications and approvals which can help you stay tuned with your friends.

*If someone has shared intimate photos of yours without your consent, then immediately report it.

*Always put your safety first. Contact law enforcement or a safety support group if you’re feeling threatened, whether it’s online or offline.

(With inputs from Facebook)

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