Staying safe on YouTube

As of 11 December 2019, we have made some updates to our harassment and cyberbullying policy. You can find more details about this change here

We want YouTube to be a place where people come to share their story, express an opinion and engage with one another. While the majority of YouTube's creators and viewers want to share, learn and connect, we know that there are people that abuse, or even harass, others.

Content that threatens individuals is not allowed on YouTube. We also do not allow content that targets an individual with prolonged or malicious insults based on intrinsic attributes, including their protected group status or physical traits. This type of behaviour violates our Community Guidelines and can result in strikes or account termination. Learn more about our harassment policy here.

Below, you'll find tips and best practices to stay safe, keep your account secure and protect your privacy.

Important: If you believe that you're in danger and/or you feel unsafe, contact your local law enforcement. 

Tips to stay safe

We want you to feel safe when you're on YouTube. That's why we encourage you to contact local law enforcement if your sense of safety feels threatened. You should also let us know if any content violates our Community Guidelines. Below are some other steps that you can take to stay safe.

Use safety tools

  • Block other users: If you block a user, they won't be able to share videos or contact you on YouTube. This will also block them from seeing or commenting on content that you've posted. It may also block them  in other Google  products or services. Learn how here. 
  • Moderate channel comments: There are tools available that allow you to remove or moderate comments posted on your channel. To learn more, read our article on moderating channel comments.
  • Update your video privacy settings: Update the privacy settings of your video to control where your video can appear and who can watch it.

Protect your identity

If someone has posted your personal information or uploaded a video of you without your consent, you can request to have the content removed based on our Privacy Guidelines.

Ask for content to be removed

Our Privacy Guidelines provide a detailed explanation of our privacy complaint process. This includes the factors that we take into account when evaluating privacy claims.
If you want to use the privacy complaint process, make sure that you are uniquely identifiable within the content that you are seeking to report before proceeding. When deciding if an individual is uniquely identifiable, we consider the following factors:
  • Image or voice
  • Full name
  • Financial information
  • Contact information
  • Other personally identifiable information

Keep your privacy and account secure

Here are some ways to protect your privacy on YouTube:

  • Protect your account data and don't share your password with others. YouTube staff will never ask you for your password. Don't be fooled if someone contacts you pretending to be from YouTube.
  • Think carefully before you post personal information. This includes things like the town that you live in, where you go to school and your home address. Also, review the About tab on your channel to make sure that it doesn't include any information that you are not comfortable sharing publicly.
  • If you think that your YouTube account has been compromised, hijacked or hacked, follow the instructions here
  • Take a look at the best practices for keeping your Google Account secure.
  • Stronger security for your Google Account: Keep your accounts secured through 2-step verification.
  • Follow this checklist to keep your account secure.

Report inappropriate behaviour

If you see content that violates our Harassment and cyberbullying policy, here is how to let us know. This is the fastest way to bring potentially inappropriate content to our attention. YouTube policy specialists review flagged videos 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

If you need to report more than one piece of content that contains bullying, threats or harassment, you can also report through our reporting tool.

Other resources

Online safety is important not only on YouTube, but across the web. Take a look at the resources from our trusted partners below to learn more about how to stay safe online across other platforms and websites.

 

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