Resources, support, and advice are available for people who are gender diverse. For example, there is a large online LGBTQI+ community filled with support, advice, information, and friendship. However, like all things, there are benefits and risks involved with being online.
What's the best way to stay safe? The eSafety Commissioner has some tips to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable time online.
Protect your personal information and identity. Consider if it's best to not use your full name in any of your usernames or handles. Also, be wary of people who want your personal information upfront. They may be in it for the wrong reason.
Be aware of other people's information and check to see if it adds up. When chatting to others, regularly check their profile and what they are saying to you. If it doesn't add up, they may not be who they say they are. Signs to look out for include people saying their webcam isn't working, not joining you online when you've organised a meeting, or asking for money.
Make sure you know the age of people you're chatting to and understand the expectations and rules of apps and online spaces that you're using.
Always remember you can say no. If you are unsure or don't trust the situation, you don't have to do anything. Always trust and respect other people's right to say yes or no as well.
Like all individuals, if you find yourself in trouble and need help with a situation online, you can connect many resources to get support. For example, if someone is threatening to share photos or videos of you or someone you know and you don't want that to happen, you can report it to the eSafety Commissioner as image-based abuse. If you or someone you know is a victim of cyber abuse, read here to find support and resources. If you or someone you know is a victim of online domestic violence, read here to find support and help.
If you are experiencing cyberbullying, you're not alone. There is help and advice to help support you throughout this experience. Click here to read other peoples stories. In addition, there are various counselling services available to individuals who would like to connect with them. Find them here. You can also find helpful websites and resources through our Connect page.
If you or someone you know is at risk or immediate harm, call 000. If you are having thoughts about self-harm or suicide, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.
eSafety Commissioner. (2019). Lesbian, gay, bi, trans, intersex or queer. https://www.esafety.gov.au/diverse-groups/lgbtiq